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The good, the bad and the commercial at Vans Warped Tour

For years I have been hearing complaints about the commercialism of the Vans Warped Tour and this year, I got to see it for myself. Having been to the very first Warped Tour here in Montreal, I initially found it very difficult to believe what people were saying; the Warped Tour I went to as a kid was all about skateboarding, good music and, of course, Vans showing off its products, which people barely knew about at the time, but there was nothing overt or pushy about it. If you liked something they had in stock, you could buy it, but no one was forcing anything down your throat.

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How Vans Warped Tour kicked this reporter’s ass, but provided great music in return

I can’t really say I ever fully grasped the notion behind the whole Build it and they will come theory, until I showed up at this year’s Vans Warped Tour stop in Montreal.

It may have been about 400 degrees outside (okay, maybe it was closer to 40, but who’s keeping track?) and Parc Jean-Drapeau isn’t exactly the shadiest of places, but that didn’t stop a flood of fans from continuously piling into the festival site throughout the day to catch a sliver, if not all, of the 69 bands on the bill.

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The Quick & Easy Boys talk Red Light Rabbit, destroying the universe, and crazy, salacious women

Oregon’s The Quick & Easy Boys are back with their second full-length album, Red Light Rabbit, which fuses many musical styles, including country and rock. The result is a high energy album that is fun to listen to and will definitely get you up and dancing. Red Light Rabbit blasts open with “Foster I…,” a fast tempo track that immediately draws the listener into the mood of the album with menacing guitar and exploding drums. “Black Panther” is a mid-tempo track with bouncy drum work and a mid-song guitar solo that demands attention. Kicking in at full speed, the title track combines edgy guitar and confronting lyrics.

By the middle of the album, with songs like “The Letter” and “Senorita,” you begin to hear a theme running through the lyrics; crazy, salacious women. Bassist and co-frontman Sean Badders explained the reason behind the theme and allowed us a brief glimpse into the band’s creative process.