Bowering Park Amphitheatre

Last minute shot over to Bowering Park, St. John’s on a nice cool evening. Finished up a meeting with a wedding couple client, before heading home to lie in bed and edit photos, I decided to stay out after realizing a notification on an event I agreed to go. It was just about to start. 

A free all ages show event that popped up on my facebook feed, I darted it over there. Three bands that I haven’t seen in a while: Monsterbator, Hard Ticket and The Swell Heads. 

For a long long time, being in bands, I have dreamed of playing at this venue. It’s such a cool place tucked away in a little pocket of Bowering Park. The acoustics sound nice, you could sit anywhere and have the best seat in the house. Most of times there with my children, I’ve never seen anything happen here. Maybe once or twice, I’ve seen a shakespeare play. The playground was just next door, and we would sometimes drop in and play on stage pretending to be rockstars or dancers. 

Kudos to the organizer that was able to get the permit for this venue to have alternative bands play - not your usual jazz or light rock band play. Not that there was anything wrong with that. It’s just good to see more diverse acts opening up to the public, rather than a hidden hole in the wall dingey nightclub. It was amazing! It was contrast to the venue but it was great! Kind of like, ‘Look what could happen if someone does it?’. The stigma of punk rock being played at family venues is washing away. Kudos to these guys. 

First, it was The Swell Heads. They were surfy, rotten, but tastey! Tight and good gangey vocals? Shit, I don’t want to be giving reviews here, but I’m just trying to describe how I feel when listening. I was slapping my knee through the whole set. I was a Hives fan. It was the closest I can compare it to. Clean janggling guitars, I see a Fender Twin on bust - the way those amps should be. 

Next, Hard Ticket. Garagey - it made me young again hearing their style. Kept me close to the early 90s, and maybe the 80s? shit! Not sure? But they were beatin’ it up!

Finally, before having to leave, I managed to catch their whole set except for the second last song, Monsterbator. I love the groove (I didn’t know Vic was playing bass in this band!), the tight, the loud traynor and fender twin paired up sitting next to each other. It was sharp and eerie, it made me deaf in one ear for about 3 hours last night. I was hearing ringings in bed and needed a bit of white noise to suppress it. Thanks Christian! I am a big Albini, Shellac, Jesus Lizard fan and all that came with it in the Post 90’s era, or whatever you call it. Am I just making this up? Who cares!? It’s just music, and I’m digging it. Not to mentioned the cute little kid popping up on stage with a little guitar joining her dad on stage. 

The crowd was great! it was respectful, we were all there rootin’ for the music and our friends. Monsterbator singer handing out watermelon - best part of the day! Off again to take more pictures…. NEXT

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