SUUNS and HOLY FUCK at LEVITATION Vancouver 2016

SUUNS, photo Mikala Folb/backstagerider.comI wasn’t on nearly enough drugs for SUUNS and Holy Fuck when they blew through town during Vancouver’s northern take on Austin’s Levitation festival.

And by not nearly enough drugs, I mean I wasn’t on any drugs, and if that’s not a sign that I’m no longer hip with the kids, I don’t know what is. (Perhaps using the phrase “hip with the kids” is also a sign, as is the fact I shook my fist at the 11:30 and 12:30am set times. And while I’m complaining, why is it always that the better bands have the crappest lights? RED IS ANNOYING, not moody.)

Yeah yeah yeah grandma, quit yer whingeing, we’ve heard your story about how you had to walk 20 miles in the snow wearing a pair of too-tight, two-tone Vans before.

Anyway. The first time I heard SUUNS’ debut Images du Futur it shook my brainmeats. It felt like a slow-moving panic attack, all crinkling tin foil at the edges and sludge in the centre, punctuated by moments of sunshine, and by gods I loved it. So really, who needs drugs, hey? At the Rickshaw in Vancouver however, SUUNS this time felt a little less essential (thanks mostly in part to the often rubbish cement-encasement sound of the venue) and less expansive (thanks entirely to the lack of drugs) than I’d hoped. But I still stood there gawping, reminded of every time I tried to blot out the world of work, burying myself in headphones listening to the hammer of “Powers of Ten” and “2020” or the Xanax hugs of “Sunspot” and “Edie’s Dream”, all of which if I recall correctly, were present at the Rickshow. YESSSS. So good.

Meanwhile. HOLY FUCK! IT’S HOLY FUCK! was, of course, the evening’s pre-requisite holler as four nerds from Toronto hauled out their boxes and wires and analogue reels on stage, added a few real-live intruments, plugged most of it in, and out came a mess of chiptune, fuzz, psych-electronica and treble. Unlike the angry Gremlins-chewing-wires of Liars, or the earth-shatteringly brilliant whir, hum and build of Mogwai or giant landscapes of Explosion in the Sky, Holy Fuck do a different kind of indie (mostly) instrumentals. Up-tempo and tinny but well-meaning seems to be the Holy Fuck approach. I can’t say I love it; but what it lacked bass and melody, it had in bounce and them Toronto guys certainly expelled energy in front of thecrowd. “Times Broken”, “Stay Lit”, “Lovely Allen” and “SHY MTN” were all there…but next time, though, I’m bringing the edibles. \m/

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