Pop Montreal, where have you been all my life? Or maybe it's better to ask myself why I haven't taken advantage of all the great shows that this concert series continuously offers year in and year out. It is not like I haven't known about them. I have always supported the record sales, the kid's Pop activities, and the annual BBQ held at Pop Montreal headquarters, yet, until this year, I had never seen any of the thousands of mind blowing shows offered by this the little festival that could. From what I saw this year, the tomfoolery ends right now, 'cause I'm a believer!
Speaking of tomfoolery, local legends Les Sexareenos headlined a show on Saturday, September 24th at the Eglise POP Little Burgundy (Eglise Saint-Edouard, corner of St. Denis and Beaubien). This was just within stumbling distance from my apartment, and expectations ran high for an all-out, balls-to-the-walls, crazy classic garage rock concert. The kids were put to bed, my better half stayed home to make sure that one of us acted like a responsible parent, and I was trying on various lamp shades around the apartment to see which one would stay on best while dancing like a fool.
This is the first time in over seven years that Les Sexareenos have played a live show together. Les Sexareenos where born out of another legendary Montreal garage rock outfit, the Spaceshits. The Spaceshits were literally blacklisted from performing in Montreal due to their ridiculous and crazy live shows, and they disbanded after a European tour in 1999. At that time, band members Choyce, Colonel Lingus (Skid Marks), and Blortz (Mark Sultan) were joined by "Work With Me" Annie on Farfisa and a new group was formed. The name Les Sexareenos came from a 1960's teen pulp novel, The Sex-a-Reenos, written by legendary rock'n'roller Ron Haydock. They played and toured extensively until the early 2000's.
By the time Les Sexareenos took to the stage, the venue had filled up nicely and the temperature shot up by 20 degrees. Although flying beer was constant throughout the show, and the small but dedicated crowd surfers ruled the front of the stage, the show never really hit a fever pitch. Instead we were treated to a good, solid show of classic garage rock. The set started off with "Watcha Gonna Do" and chugged along at a brisk pace. The major highlight for me was hearing "Everybody Sexareeno" and the frenzied dancing that ensued as a result. As good as the show was, I couldn't help thinking how this would have went down some eight or nine years ago with a venue appropriate to the number of people in attendance. That being said, Montreal has a host of top shelf garage bands that really know how to play this genre well and I was happy to see a band that helped shape the sound.