A Rockin’ Summer Solstice Night at L’Hemisphere Gauche

While Summer has announced itself to Montrealers through its many heat waves, the four-bill Summer Solstice show at L’Hemisphere Gauche on Beaubien kicked off the official first day of Summer with live performances from local bands, as well as those from Ottawa and Toronto. The Ottawa three-piece band Backstreet Dragon opened the night with songs from the latest album Kick Rocks and gave the crowd a sneak peek at some soon-to-be released summer tunes. Followed by Joey Bird and the Toronto band Roach, the night ended with a vibrant performance by the Montreal group Societal Siege

The ambiance fostered throughout the night at l’Hemisphere Gauche was similar to that of a house show. Indeed, despite being in a room full of strangers, a sense of familiarity and comfort radiated from both the stage and crowd. Small shows like these not only allow people to discover talent in their “own backyard,” but also help further create and cement the feeling of community within a busy city, such as Montreal. 

While Backstreet Dragon has previously performed shows in Montreal, it was Roach’s first time in the city. An important milestone for the Toronto band, their show in Montreal was also a celebration of their latest single “Everything or Nothing.” With the crowd yelling “one more song,” Societal Siege also had the chance to perform to a live audience some new material that the lead singer admitted that the band had only practiced a few times. Each one of the four bands brought to the stage a unique sound and character to their performance, truly treating the audience to an array of exciting sounds. 

The mix of local and out-of-province bands performing at L’Hemisphere Gauche not only allowed the crowd to enjoy the talents that have emerged within Montreal but also gave Montrealers a look into the various music scenes outside of the city and province. Indeed, Montreal continues to be a mandatory stop for many out-of-province bands, as both music lovers and musicians alike are spoiled with the number of local venues the city has to offer. It is no surprise that Montreal has been able to and continues to foster a vibrant community of local musicians, as well as attract talent from near and far. In fact, located just north of some of Montreal’s most iconic venues, the Beaubien bar and music venue prides itself in being a place for local and alternative artists to showcase their talent on stage.

There truly is no better way to start the summer than listening to some hometown bands, as well as discovering new music in the process. The Summer Solstice show at L’Hemisphere Gauche leaves you chasing that post-concert high and making you wish the night never ended. Luckily enough, in a city such as Montreal, there is never a shortage of good music.

Ceylan is the host of Northern Stagelights, a weekly show putting the spotlight on mainly indie/alt rock bands from across Canada, Sundays 1PM-2PM