NO USE FOR A NAME + Bigwig + The Reason + Mute @ Metropolis

By Mikey B - The Lonesome Strangers - 06/09/2005

A good No Use For A Name show is a pretty regular occurrence here, considering the fact that they’ve played Montreal twice in the last year and a half. As far as most hard-working punk acts go, NUFAN has still got chops, and they haven’t pussed out and gone pop like so many other punkers out there.

Rocking out alongside NUFAN were local boys Mute, The Reason and their tag team brothers in New Jersey’s Bigwig. It was fair to say that most people weren’t all that enthused for any of the bands. If The Reason catered to many of the younger generation of punks, I didn’t happen to see many coming together at the Metropolis that night.

The show was seen by many as a double-bill starring Bigwig & No Use For A Name, two bands that have a massive Montreal following. No big surprise here, since we are living in one of the biggest punk music hotbeds in North America. For this particular show, either band could’ve opened. On this night of course, Bigwig opened for NUFAN as the newly revamped four-piece scorched through a 40-minute set of tunes spanning three albums. Songs like “Best Of Me” drew fury in the pit, while the poppier “Girl In The Green Jacket” received a massive sing-a-long. Funny how these over-the-top vegans haven’t found the need to release an album in over four years. 2001’s Invitation To Tragedy was a blast from the pants of punk rock at its best: fast and raw. Some might see this waiting period as a downer, while I see it as a good thing. So many punk bands nowadays are churning out an album every second year, which can be a good thing if there is progression or change. So when Bigwig’s album comes out, you can bet it’ll be well worth the wait.

Speaking of new albums, No Use For A Name has got one, and it’s called Keep 'Em Confused. This show was apparently a “CD release party", which is kinda cool although I’m assuming they’ve done this in every other city before Montreal. They were selling the albums for 10$ at the merch table, which is refreshing after almost having bought a Motorhead T-shirt for 45$. Over the last six years, listening to and seeing NUFAN play, I don’t think I’ve ever been disappointed with an album or live show. Like most of their live shows, NUFAN played a good mix of old and new songs covering their eight albums. Personal favorites included “Justified Black Eye”, “Not Your Savior” and everyone’s favorite “The Answer Is Still No”, a song which frontman Tony Sly begs the question, “what’s your name?


No Use For A Name hasn’t changed a bit, although since their last release, Tony Sly had teamed up with Lagwagon’s Joey Cape on an acoustic album where they would both be playing NUFAN and Lagwagon songs. It might not be something most punkers out there could be very fond of, nonetheless I rather enjoyed some of these acoustic renditions. Thankfully, NUFAN hadn’t gotten soft after the split acoustic album. The only thing that changed was Tony Sly’s hairdo, which had that slick emo-licious part to the side that most “punk” kids at Foufs like to sport. Other than that, this NUFAN show was just as good as any other I’ve seen. As always, the setlist was solid, the crowd was nuts and I was in awe of Matt Riddle’s (formerly of Face To Face) superb bass-playing skills. Still, I lacked that feeling of closure I get after seeing a great live show, even though I got to see one of my favorite punk bands play an amazing set with some good friends of mine. I feel as if I’ve been seeing the same No Use For A Name show and listening to the same No Use For A Name album for the last few years. Nothing’s changed and they’re just as good as they’ve always been. I might just be getting bored.

[Tune in to The Lonesome Strangers Tuesdays 12pm - 2pm]