As far as Sundays in Abbotsford go, September 17 was fairly forgettable: lots of rain, and, if you had a particularly keen nose, the aroma of small-town angst hung ever-so-lightly in the air. In an effort to address the existential dread that peers over my every waking moment, I decided to check for anything fun happening locally. To my great relief, I found one shining answer in the dark — an acoustic(ish) act playing at Carport Manor.
For those of you unfamiliar with the local haven of sonic pleasure, Carport Manor is quite literally a boarded up carport in someone’s house. Trust me, it’s quite awesome, except for maybe the couch, but hey, nobody gets everything right. The real front-and-centre appeal of the venue, aesthetics aside, are the varied acts that call the small slice of crust-punk heaven home. At any rate, Carport’s allure took a lacklustre weekend and gave back an especially auspicious evening, as far as Abbotsford Sundays go.
Locally-grown and long-time vegan Holden Milne had the honour of being the first act to grace the stage. Unfortunately, I was unable to catch a good bit of the first song, but the rest of the set seemed to mirror the dreary night in a beautifully hypnotic manner. Milne went on to play a ballad recounting the the death of his dearly beloved pooch, Halo, who died prematurely. I have to be honest, I don’t think a single eye was dry there after. As all things must come to an end, so too did Milne’s set, ushering into my ears an as of then unheard of voice.
I must admit, I was renewed in my vigorous love of life because of the next set, so hats off to Greg Rekus. Greg, hailing from Winnipeg, was truly amazing. Often, people equate acoustic guitars and tambourines with horrible memories from some form of Bible camp, or mind-mushingly soft pop. But here, I saw a man scream, shout, stomp, and strum out a ragingly beautiful composition of sound. Among Greg’s many talents, the most mind blowing was his ability to really get the crowd engaged with his music, which was undoubtedly due to his limitless energy on stage, and his undeniably honed talent. My only criticism is that not enough dancing was taking place.
Local punk legends Like Bears took to the stage to finish off the night. With such earworms as “Crickets on the Interstate” and “Don’t Be A Trout,” it was physically impossible not to have fun. If you ever get the chance to see them play live, and believe me there are many, do yourself a huge favour and just go, for the love of God. With great confidence, I can say that Like Bears brought about an indescribable end to an already awesome night of live music.