Review and photos by: Neil Nicholas Reyes
Edited by: Noah Salo
It’s rare to see so much local history in one evening, but those lucky enough to witness Simply Saucer on stage at This Ain’t Hollywood received a history lesson worth remembering.
Wavelength, a Toronto-based music collective, planned “The Simply Saucer Touring Revue” as a tribute to Canada’s punk pioneers. The short three-date tour featured artists Hybrid Moment, Karaoke, and Ghostlight, all paying homage to the band by playing music inspired by Saucer’s Cyborgs, Revisited album. Each night closed with Edgar Breau, singer and songwriter for Simply Saucer, and a backing band. But the night in Hamilton was special. It wasn’t just Edgar Breau. It was Simply Saucer! And what better place to host one of Hamilton’s rock pioneers than a 100 year-old venue named after the classic album by Hamilton’s own Forgotten Rebels?
Hybrid Moment opened the night with a clash of noise from two guitarists. Playing all aspects of their instruments, and even playing them with drumsticks, the duo created a frightful musical journey through sound before breaking into a song.
The guitar duo trend continued with Karaoke, whose rich vintage tone rang throughout their set. Their songs harkened to Saucer’s rock sensibilities.
Ghostlight followed with a fantastic musical soundscape created by ambient guitar sounds over a very solid drummer and bassist. The bass held the whole atmosphere together under the lead instrumentalist, who played a wide range of notes and noise on vocals, flute, and saxophone through an effects processor. Their incredible 40-minute piece set the stage for the hometown heroes.
Simply Saucer ripped through an energetic, hour and a half long set, playing classic tracks and some more recent material. They opened with a bang and only stopped to put the crowd through what they deemed “awkward silences” while they tuned up. Their style of rock and punk had the whole crowd dancing and having a great time, playing classics like “Bullet Proof Nothing”, “Dance the Mutation”, and “I Can Change My Mind.” They even pulled up a young lady to dance on stage during “Mutation” while they rocked out!
The audience was a fascinating mix of young and older fans. Friends and fans from their early days came to support the band, some even bringing their kids to see the hometown heroes. It’s not every day you see hipsters dancing alongside leather-clad rockers.
Even after thirty years, Simply Saucer brought an impressive amount of energy to the stage. Edgar Breau only grew livelier and more vibrant as the show went on. He often slung his guitar around his back and danced. He worked the mic stand as hard as any act on the Warped Tour. The rhythm section of bassist Kevin Christoff and drummer Joe Csontos drove the beat the whole show. And the songs sounded as fresh and new as the day they were first recorded.
The band ended their main set with the epic twelve-minute long “Clearly Invisible” and the classic “Here Come the Cyborgs”, which Breau described as a challenge to the Beatles’ album, Meet the Beatles! Guitarist Steve Foster and electronics player Dan Wintermans had a very cool e-bow-slide and Theremin battle at the end of the set, guiding the band’s sonic soundscape.