Saturday November 14th, Buffalo New York was host to a JackSoFar favourite, July Talk who brought with them a fantastic opening act, Little Hurricane. Despite a rapidly intensifying cold and a fear of driving on major highways, I hopped in the car, picked up the girls and we hit the road for Buffalo just before the crack of dawn that morning. We were excited for the road trip and the experience of being in a new city, checking out a new venue, and of course hearing some of our favourite tunes.
Our early departure meant that we arrived in Buffalo before most of the city had awoke. We were left to our own devices to scope out the area and quickly found The Town Ballroom, which would be our destination for that evening. We stumbled upon the perfect used bookstore with a huge collection of unique reads, checked out the local library to round out our book tour of the city, and eventually landed at a brewery and restaurant where we could enjoy some local eats and ales. I highly recommend the Pearl St. Grill and Brewery if you are in Buffalo!
A trip back to the hotel to freshen up and check out the wine list at the hotel bar and soon enough it was time to grab a cab back to the theatre district. We arrived at the Town Ballroom early, but there was already a growing crowd waiting for the doors to open. We chatted with the people around us and found that almost everyone had seen July Talk before, many of them coming down from Canada like we did, to see the show. As the doors opened we made our way in and hit the merch table right away to check for the shirts we couldn’t find at the last show and we were in luck!
The venue itself was laid out nicely with a large lounge and bar area when you first enter with the bar in the centre, perfect for grabbing a couple $4 beers, thank you America! The concert hall also offered a bar on either side on one of the tiered levels that led down to the floor and stage. Our arrival time meant that with new shirts and beers in hand, we were still right at the stage with a perfect view.
Starting off the music for the night were a couple of local musicians who got the crowd warmed up for the whirlwind performance of Little Hurricane. A two piece band made up of a
powerhouse female drummer and a rocking frontman, Little Hurricane played an upbeat set that was the perfect prelude to the high energy of July Talk. I have to admit that I spent most of the time enthralled by the skills of their drummer and I can bet that more than one girl in that crowd left wanting a drum set of her own!
By the time July Talk took the stage the crowd was pumped and ready to rock. As Peter, Leah, Ian, Josh, and Danny made their way to the stage they were welcomed with screams and whistles of excited fans who had eagerly awaited this performance. As usual with a July Talk show we were treated to the playful back and forth between Leah and Peter that makes their performance seem like a glimpse inside a unique and personal relationship. We were graced with all the classics like “Paper Girl”, “Summer Dress”, “Gentlemen”, and “Headsick” which seemed appropriate given the current state of my sinuses. Of course they also played a number of new songs that have already grown to be favourites to many of their fans.Leah came right to the front row to stand up on the barrier and sing before deciding to jump into the crowd to do a little surfing over our heads, with Peter following shortly after. These guys obviously thrive off of the interaction with the audience and you can see them genuinely enjoying the show as much as everyone who paid to be there. The entire band has a synergy that is unique and powerful and makes every performance a new experience despite how many times you have seen them. The set at Town Ballroom was probably one of my favourite July Talk shows, and for a number of reasons including having traveled to another country to see the band, the fantastic venue, and the fantastic group of girls I was with! I even ran into some of my favourite Canadian concert buddies up in the front row which was a wonderful surprise! We were lucky enough that after the show we caught Peter and Leah at the merch table and got both our tickets and t-shirts signed – Shout out to Patrick and Artie, the awesome and friendly security who let us back in to see the band! While I would have loved to grab a photo with them, there were so many people waiting their turn to even say hi and considering I have met them before I decided to step aside and let others get their July Talk fix. We wrapped up the night with some fun and friendly Buffalonians, joining them to celebrate a birthday and enjoy some staple Buffalo food, mac and cheese and chicken wings!
While I don’t like to include any negativity in my post I feel the need to address a certain group of fans who were present at this show as they left our group with a bit of a bad taste in our mouths. I will refrain from mentioning their group by name, but I am sure that many of you reading this will either know I am referring to or have had your own experience with someone like this. This is not applicable to everyone in this group, however I am referring to the particular people who feel that they have more of a right to the music because of how many shows they go to, people who have an attitude that the number of concerts you attend directly feeds into some twisted concert-goer hierarchy that makes them somehow more important than the person who saved their pennies to attend their first show because they just love the music. It is these people with their mood killing attitude, who don’t seem willing to share in the music but rather demand that people give them respect for their obsession, that are really disappointing. At first I looked forward to meeting some of these “fans” but I quickly realized that we were not the same, that I am a different kind of fan and I want to stay that way. I am not ever going to compete to “stalk” a band the most, nor am I going to shoot people dirty looks, or physically push them when they want to dance to their favourite song (both things that I overheard and experienced on Saturday night). That will never be me, and I will never align myself with those kinds of people. I wish all fans the best and to each their own, but music is for all regardless of how many shows you have been to, how much money you spend, or how many pictures you take with the band. We all have just as much right to be there and love the bands just as much. Despite that small upset, we had an amazing time at a great show with was was mostly an awesome crowd of people.
Until next time, friends and fans,
Keep an eye out on our Shots from the Show page for more pics from this show!