18-07-13

A culmination of life

I'm a pretty lucky guy. I've seen a ton of my favourite bands, some multiple times, some on reunion shows, some in different countries. There are a few bands/artists I really wanna see but haven't yet. Self Defense Family, for example, is a band I really wanna see live. I haven't seen Masked Intruder, even though I had multiple chances. House Boat should get their asses over here. I'm going to the Fest later this year so that'll resolve my issues with seeing Like Bats, Mixtapes, Dillinger fucking Four, Hold Tight, Crusades, Weekend Dads and many more live on stage.
But one band I've been waiting to see for ages (like, a good 6 years) is Defiance, Ohio. A band that is dear to me for some weird reason. I got the records, I got a t-shirt, I got the bootlegs, listened to and read the interviews, I've seen the live sessions, I even decided to get the Share What Ya Got bird tattooed a couple months ago, and I really like them.
So when I heard Ryan Woods, Theo Hilton and Toby Foster, who did a colab tape once, were touring Europe, I was extatic. Ryan Woods has been in Defiance, Ohio since the start, Theo Hilton joined in around the second record, and 2 years or so ago Ryan started this band called High Dive with Toby Foster and Nick Romy. Theo is also (in) a band called Nana Grizol, who I've never heard (of) actually. I bet they are/were in other bands wut that's the main deal. Theo, Toby and Ryan were coming to Europe to play songs their bands made. That would mean I could hear Defiance, Ohio songs live. Seeing as Defiance, Ohio is not playing Fest this year (which is actaully odd, cause they're kind of a staple band), this is, for now, as close as I'll get to the real thing.

I'm a lucky guy. Lucky enough to get invited by the infamous Lenny for a backyard barbecue and show by these three gentlemen, for his birthday. Once again, thanks so much, made my year pretty much. I'm sorry for the lousy present! Happy birthday.

So, with plenty of food and drinks (seriously, thanks) in my belly, and after the slip'n'slide activities, it was time for a show. The band set up the guitar, bas and keyboards in the yard and started playing and I couldn't stop smiling. They started out with Nana Grizol's Cynicism, a song that starts with the magnificent line I once saw a sunset so vivid and warm that I swore it was perfect which sounds so delightful for some reason. Theo's voice is really cute, actually. I don't know how the describe it other than that. Like, all his vowels are short and he has a pretty high-pitched voice, and it ends up sounding "cute"/"cool". I'm probably not making sense, whatevz. They constantly switched roles, Theo and Toby switch between keyboards and guitars, I think Ryan stayed on the bass throughout. As a bassist myself, I think it's really cool how he plays the songs, there's some really simple but effective riffs. They shared vocals on all songs. It's really a collaboration and a celebration of musicianship.
They played a couple of Defiance, Ohio songs like Old Dead Tree, Oh Susquehanna, Anxious And Worrying and maybe another one as well? You Are Loved? I don't know. That was great. Oh Susquehanna was really awesome to hear, for some reason. They also played quite a few High Dive songs, including Tennessee, and How To Grow and I think another one (Through All of It?) from the new These Are Days EP, which is amazing. There were some other songs that passed the repertoire (like Nana Grizol's Gave On) but I can't remember it all. I was just really happy those guys were playing their songs. The was definitely a moment I've been looking forward to more than anything else and my life is better now.

After the show I talked to and interviewed them, and they were just the nicest people. We discussed the difference in Euro and US cocktail sauce, how they ended up playing together, but mostly about their ideas and opinions about queercore, queer culture and their experiences with being gay or whatevz, which is, according to them, one of the reasons they tour together.

So I met some people I've "looked up to" for quite some time and they're actually really cool and nice. That rules.

So yeah, everything's swell, thanks Lenny, everything's cool.

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