Seeing as how I'm seeing the Tom Fun Orchestra again on Saturday, I think I should try to review the show I saw in November before it leaves my mind completely and is replaced by something new. I can't imagine it leaving my mind completely, though--it was the most epic and wonderful show I've been to this year, I think. It's in the running for that whole best shows of the year rundown that I'm doing after the 27th (when I see my last show of the year!). It was just so wonderful. It was at my favourite venue, George's Roadhouse, probably the most maritimey venue you'll ever see. And I can't imagine a more maritimey band than Tom Fun. It was the first time I'd seen them play with Carmen, but that wasn't bad at all. She's entertaining enough. I do miss Alicia, though. There's something about her voice that just can't be matched.
Anyway! The show! It was in this roadhouse bar, permanent stage in the corner, I'll take some photos at the next show there and share. The opener was a band called Olenka and the Autumn Lovers, and since I was near broke after a few draughts (absolutely did not bring enough money to the show) I wasn't able to get their CD. I chatted with Olenka for a bit after the show, but that's another story for another time. A friend's brother was there and bought the CD, but he lives in Fredericton and I haven't been able to get it out of him. One of these days! They're from Toronto, but they play, kind of in the same style as Tom Fun, but instead of the influence of the Maritimes, the influence is that of Eastern Europe. There's a lot of stomping, also, which always makes me nostalgic for the Port City Allstars... but all in all, I adored Olenka's set. It was something that I won't forget.
Carmen did her own set with her little side-group. It was something I did forget. I'll have to tell you more about her after Saturday, because honestly I don't remember much about the performance. Maybe it bored me, or maybe I just wasn't paying attention.
Then there was Tom Fun. Ian has the most dominating stage presence I've ever seen, and when you're on stage with eight others that's saying a lot. He is the band, plain and simple, and I'm sure he'd tell you the same thing. It was a big, sweaty, messy, maritimey dance party in front of the stage and we all smelled of moosehead and keith's. Every bit of it involved the audience, and Ian is definitely the king of showmen. I'm sure that at one point he had the crowd shouting back at him 'MEATBALLS AND RICE' or whatever had been the special of the day at George's. The crowd and the band were stomping, bouncing, just altogether a wonderful experience. I'm more pumped for the Christmas show in Saint John on Saturday than I am for Christmas itself. While I'm on about all of this, here's a track from the album. But trust me: they're all gold, and you have to see this band at some point. They are, simply, the most epic small-venue live show you'll ever see.
The Tom Fun Orchestra - Last of the Curious Thieves