We have a new addition to our active band links today, and they are Slumshine, the current acoustic punk solo project from veteran local hardcore punk singer/bassist Brenton Ellis! Slumshine are nothing new, having debuted on stage back in September 2017, but early sound descriptions pointed to more of an alt-folk theme. However, as fans can attest, Slumshine are a full on punk act, just with one musician clad in the finest pink knit ski mask you'll ever find on a local stage! Brent doesn't use his name officially with Slumshine, and curiously uses plural pronouns (i.e. we/us) despite being a solo project. Initially making a splash via sets at the first Oh!No festival and by opening for The Faps, The Ghostly Hounds, and Dany Laj & The Looks in the fall of 2017, Slumshine went dormant throughout the following year, before returning to action in early 2019, appearing at Oh!No III and opening for The Faps again, Darsombra, Femur, and The River Jacks. Also, they released their first album "SLMSHN" on cassette tapes last July, and you can buy/stream it on Bandcamp on a "name your price" model.
the Oh!No Collective, who distributed "SLMSHN" in their first release as a planned cassette tape-centric indie label, and his talents as a painter and artist are very evident in Slumshine's online marketing. Fans can see Slumshine back at it on Friday, March 20th when they open for The Sick Sons at LopLops (details here), but in a LOCAL CONCERT ALERT, you can see Slumshine in a rare solo headlining appearance on Wednesday, March 18th at... Home Bakehouse Bed and Breakfast at 168 March Street?! This is a new downtown business whose name suggests what they do, so if you like homemade baked goods, or need a place to stay, Home is where the heart is! The locale is very atypical for an ostensible "punk concert", but Home has partnered with the returning Fishbowl Festival for sourdough classes, for what that's worth. This mid-week show has an early 7:00 PM start time, no age limit, and a "pay what you can" entry model. Visit the official Facebook event page for more details!
Currently also a bassist with The Dynowaves, Brent's vocal work here and in Toronto is well known, and musically, I get more of his earlier straight punk vibe here rather than his later hardcore punk screaming, albeit with the stripped down unplugged format. Solid lyrics and strong melodic vocals mesh together well, and I think these sounds would be a great fit with a full plugged-in band, but even in this format, it's easy to see why Slumshine turn heads even beyond the pink mask. A smattering of videos are on Facebook & YouTube, but here's Slumshine playing their songs "Back in Blue" and "Blue Shift" at Outspoken Brewing in December!
Next up, I have reluctantly moved local alternative/indie rock quartet Id Iota to our inactive band links. The group has not issued a public statement since their cover of Pup's "Free At Last" was uploaded to their Facebook page one year ago today, though that performance was sans frontman Christian Lemay, and regardless of his status with the band, they have not played a live set since the 2018 Rotaryfest weekend. Active since mid-2015 when they succeeded the studio-only Habitat Shuffle, Id Iota quickly became a popular sight at a variety of local concerts in the mid-2010s, including at Lopstock II, three straight Rotaryfest Second Stages from 2016-2018, two Ontario tour runs in 2016 with The Pixo Control and Mike Mikus, and opening slots for touring bands like Saturn Alien, Windigo, and The Almighty Rhombus. Along the way, Id Iota also released their "Maudlin Fair" EP in April 2016, and they were working on a full length album as recently as April 2018.
I have no clue what happened to Id Iota, but they were a creative band that had enough genre diversity to slide into hard rock and indie shows with relative ease! Genre preference-wise, I did take to their 2000s ska punk predecessors Free Beer more, but Id Iota showed their growth and progression as musicians very well, and they left a wide footprint locally and with their tours 4 years ago. Hopefully we see Id Iota and their planned full-length CD resurface down the road, but best of luck to Christian, Dustin, Robert, Blair, Justin, and Dan in the future!
Finally for today, here's three recent Musicians Wanted Facebook group postings relating to musician and band searches from the last while, and as usual, these are in alphabetical order by artist name:
- Former Half Past bassist Arthur Lacasse is starting an acoustic rock band with him on guitar, who would cover modern hard rock acts like Highly Suspect, Shinedown, Seether, and Three Days Grace. He already has a singer lined up, and is looking for a bassist, drummer (ideally on cajon), and maybe an extra guitarist. It'd be great to see Arthur back out there, but if you're interested in more details, message him at this link or via his group post from February 8th!
- A local rhythm guitarist named Jayrald Micky is looking to join a local band, and while he is aiming to play guitar in said group, he does have drumming experience. He didn't give a genre preference, just that he was "looking for anything at this point" and that he just wants to jam again. I'm not familiar with Jayrald as a musician, but if you want more details, message him at this link or via his group post from February 12th!
- Fluid 5ive guitarist Liam Vaillancourt posted here on February 11th looking for a keyboard player for "a gigging band" that is capable of playing signature lines from various rock, blues, and country cover songs. Liam did not specify in the post if this was for Fluid 5ive or another band, but if it is referring to the 5ive, we have not heard anything regarding Rob Irving's status with the group (note that Rob played rhythm guitar as well as keyboard.) In any event, message Liam at this link or above for more details!
That's all for today, but stay tuned for more news and notes on the site this weekend! Thanks everyone!