Concert Review: Lullebye Arkestra, LadyHawk, Constantines, The Garrison, Dec 17


Toronto – I hate the winter. I can’t even imagine why anyone would be walking along here a few hundred years and think ‘hmm, this stinging sensation I like on my face, I like it! Lets live here permanantly!‘. It’s so cold. Anyways, once winter comes, the concert season purely becomes a season about proximity. Since I live in the west, the shows I’d most likely randomly pop into become Lee’s Palace, the Mod Club and now, the Garrison. These are all within walking distance for me. Even the Horseshoe and El Mo become slight hesitations. So on Thursday night, courtesy of the blog Singing Lamb, I was notified of the fact that the Constantines and Ladyhawk were playing a “secret show” at the Garrison. Please don’t make any Lamb/Lam jokes. It’s played out.

Now I won’t lie to you, I haven’t heard much of the Constantines since that album with the song ‘Young Lions’ on it, and really, I only know of Ladyhawk through Wade. However, the word ‘secret’ makes me feel a bit special, as if I’m part of some elite organization of individuals or something. Either that or I’m an alcoholic looking for any excuse to get out of the house and have a drink. I’m going with the first one for now. Seeing how the Constantines sold out two shows at Lees Palace last weekend, I thought this show was going to be packed and so I went early. I also managed to convince some other members of my posse to go…


ooooooooooo yeaaaaah. The opening band was Lullabye Arkestra, a Toronto band featuring Do May Say Think’s Justin Small on the drums with Katia Taylor on the bass. These guys were straight up pure sleaze sex and rock n roll. Justin really liked to stand up and play drums, and was really appreciative of the Constantines being there, and also made fun of their age. Katia Taylor plays a pretty mean bass and delivered some wicked banshee like cries into the microphone. They were pretty decent and definitely set the tone for the night. After a cool 40 minute set, they left to a decent ovation.

Next up was Ladyhawk. I think by this time, both Wade and Patricia were tired of my Ladyhawk / Ladyhawke jokes. “I saw Ladyhawk already! only it was the New Zealand one! hahahahahahahahahahaha!”. It’s not even funny. Wade was a big fan of their older stuff, but I guess Ladyhawk decided to play a lot of new music. There was a few older tunes that got the crowd going. I guess they are a pretty normal guitar rock band group. They didn’t really do all that much for me, but I spent most of their set thinking about how a “Ladyhawk vs Ladyhawke” article would work, and then ultimately decided it wouldn’t. I think they played around 45 minutes.

Constantines came on a bit after midnight. I’m always reminded of the movie when I think of this band. I can’t believe it’s been ten years since they’ve been around. If anything it’s just an indication that I am old. Thinking about it, my favorite music period of “britpop” was HALF MY LIFE ago. It was a bittersweet moment as I realize that aging is indeed inevitable, unless you are benjamin button. The most shocking thing about this show was that the Garrison was only half full! This was a bit of a shocker (not the finger kind). Maybe Lauren and co. had kept it too secret. Less crowds mean more room which is good. I was pretty pleased with this outcome until about halfway through the set when Giant Gonzalez decided to stand in front of me:


Now as a 6’1 man, I have never really known what it was like to not get a good clean sight line to the stage, but once the white kareem abdul jabbar stood in front of me, blocking my entire view, I understood. It’s no fun. I was put in my place. Never again will I look at a short person at a concert and not get their beef. I am one of you now. This guy was so tall and blocked my view so completely, that the guy standing beside him at turned around and laughed. Sigh. So I decided to stand up and move, and then and only then, could I enjoy the rest of the show.

The show itself was pretty good. The Constantines have always felt like a working class type of band. Sometimes it’s good to go to these shows and keep it real. Going to the neighborhood bar, drinking cheap ass beer (PBR), mingling with the folks, comparing debts with the other people ‘trying to make it in the city’, throwing my jacket on a pool table and not worry about it being stolen, seeing a good honest guitar rock n roll band…it’s all part of the Constantine experience. What am I saying? I don’t know. I don’t even talk to anyone during a show.

The roughly one hour set ended with a wicked AC/DC cover, you know, the one where theres some kind of screaming with some guitar riff. As expected, some other people joined them on stage for the cover and it was a good way to end off a good night.

Posted on by Ricky in Concerts

About Ricky

Britpop lovin Chinaman, consumer of all things irrelevant. Toronto Raptors fan.

One Response to Concert Review: Lullebye Arkestra, LadyHawk, Constantines, The Garrison, Dec 17

  1. Jen

    half full, eh? i heard it was packed! what the hell.
    also, you missed the actual opener… Tropics!

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