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New York Ska Legends the Toasters Return to the Funhouse For A Packed Show, by Holly Homan

The month of February always brings the much looked forward to Toasters to Seattle. After some stellar openers, the band came on stage and the horn section (Gilbert Covarrubius on trombone and Nate Koch on sax) immediately riled up the packed house by thrusting their fists in the air and getting them to copy the repeated, hey heys. Said horn section was non-stop charisma and nearly stole the show. The Toasters performed many of their better-known songs such as I’m Running Right Through the World and East Side Beat.

When guitarist/singer Robert (Bucket) Hingley (and only original member) introduced their song “Pirate Radio” he mentioned his inspiration to write it stemmed from the stations he listened to growing up in the sixties. At that time the BBC radio played crap while the pirate stations broadcasting from boats off shore, played the good stuff like Zep and the Doors.

Bucket also touched on the current political climate, mentioning the Super Bowl and how much money was spent on that event and wouldn’t it be better if that much money were instead spent on better pay for teachers or for Social Security.

As usual he ended with “Don’t Let the Bastards Grind You Down” and dedicated it to all “asshole politicians.”

I was impressed that the club was so full as this was the Toasters’ second Seattle show of the week. This just shows that ska is not dead – not in Seattle anyway.

Playing ahead of the Toasters was a Seattle punk trio calling themselves 2KLIX. These guys were fun! They ranged from some hard core to punk/pop. The bass player (Nick) had long tousled hair roaming half way down his back and he flipped it about constantly as he leaped about the stage or grunted and growled into the mic. The vocal duties were shared by the guitar player (Landon) who had shorter hair but also whipped it about. Add a ferocious drummer (Delwrick) who created so much steam he was his own sauna. I really enjoyed their performance.

Preceding 2KLIX was Jah Remedi. These guys, from Chico, CA, played a more traditional Jamaican reggae with smooth harmonious sounds. Vocalist/rhythm guitarist Trevor Delasaux actually sounded like he was channeling Bob Marley. The rest of Jah Remedi is Kevin Nowak- Keyboards, Nicky Bfly- Vocals, Mike Malone-drums, – Vocals/Rhythm Guitar, Michael Hooper- Bass, and Avery Diamon on Lead guitar.

Unfortunately I had to miss the Replicators’ set. My camera’s battery was running low and my spare had disappeared. I had to rush back home (about ten miles away) and grab my charger, rush back to the club, and charge my battery so it had enough charge for the Toasters.

I did catch openers Tony Taylor and the Nova Babies. This Seattle trio consists of the very vivacious Hilary Erlandson on bass and Das Hoots on drums and Tony Taylor on guitar and vocals. Tony reminded me of a young Paul McCartney complete with a curl falling down the middle of his forehead. They played catchy guitar riffs with a well-rounded punk pop sound. As Yoda would say, much talent in this band.

I assume the Toasters will return in a year for another show and I also assume I’ll be there.

Holly Homan

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