Concert Review: Public Animal, May 30, 3030

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Public Animal is the latest project from Ian Blurton, a fixture on the Toronto music scene since the early ’80s. In his previous bands, from C’mon to Blurtonia and Change Of Heart, Blurton has been all about the rock and Public Animal sounds like the logical extension of that sound. It’s riff heavy and melodic and seemingly reminiscent of practically every strand of ’70s and ’80s hard rock, from bluesy boogie and big Sabbath inspired riffs to the Deep Purple-ish keyboard sounds to some excursions into Hawkind style space rock territory.

As April Wine once sang, “Rock N” Roll Is A Vicious Game.” They probably weren’t referring to disinterested crowds, but a non-responsive audience is a very real danger in the live music game. Luckily for Public Animal, they had a fairly well engaged crowd for their show at 3030. It was also a relatively packed house – the fact that it was a free show probably helped that.

“We’re not in Toronto,” said Blurton, “You can tell we’re not downtown. There’s some free souls here.” It’s true, the crowd did seem a bit more into it than the typical Toronto crowd. That said, when he wasn’t entirely satisfied, Blurton wasn’t going to just let it be. After encouraging the crowd to clap along, he gave a thumbs down near the end of their set.” It was free to get in here, you fucks!” he said before introducing us to John, who he described as “a fellow Torontonian who likes to come out to our shows and get drunk.” John was apparently there to show us how it was done and he took his job seriously, getting up onstage to demonstrate exactly how to properly rock out while clapping. Truthfully, it almost seemed like he was getting a little too into it at times, but he was definitely having a good time, as were several others in attendance. As was the band, as evidenced by Blurton’s final words before leaving the stage: “We are Public Animal. You are beautiful.”

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Posted on by Paul in Concerts

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