SXSW Preview: The Wet Secrets – I Can Swing a Hammer

When people ask where I’m from, the typical answer is Toronto. This is partly because most Americans have little to no hope of placing Edmonton geographically, in effect defeating their hope to relate and segue into the next piece of conversation. And while I CAN go into detail about how great the Oilers were 30 years ago (albeit after a bit of Wikipedia research), or how Edmonton is the more liberal capital of the Texas of Canada, somehow none of that helps diminish the inferiority complex even a little. This is why I listened to “I Can Swing A Hammer” with much glee. The Wet Secrets hail from Edmonton. Yes, that bitterly cold place 6 hrs drive above the 49th parallel north where the shop composition of a big indoor mall defined much of my teenage life. And “Hammer” sounds every bit the teensy, rebellious pop-rock anthem it needs to be when your hometown has been twice (unjustly) crowned the “Murder capital of Canada” (we’ll be right with you after 14 more photo-finishes, Winnipeg!)

While the lyrics won’t win any poetry awards, it encapsulates the complex tug-of-war between potential and reality so well that you need only take 1¬†capsule a day (CBC’s prescription of 1 pill every morning is right on the money). As long as they don’t plan to twirl those hammers like batons while they play in their marching band costumes, I’ll definitely drop by at Southby in support.

The Wet Secrets play at Friends on March 18 at 1AM, and the Swan Dive at 12AM on March 19.

Posted on by Gary in Everything, Song of the Day, South By Southwest

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