On Thursday night YGK Fest presented a night of Rock mixed with Pop and a little bit of Folk. The lineup for the night was Stuck On Planet Earth, Amos The Transparent and Kalle Mattson.
The night started off with the heaviest band of the night Stuck On Planet Earth. Hailing from Vaughn these guys knew how to tear open the night. Right from their first song they were right into and were acting as if they were the headlining act. Normally it takes a couple of songs before the opening band gets into their set but these guys wasted no time at all. It might have helped a little due to the fact that they had Queens TV cameras recording their entire set. I found out later that this wasn’t their first time in Kingston yet they have played a few times during the Indie Night at The Mansion. One of their catchiest songs for me was their third song as they started the song off with one hell of a catchy Bass intro riff. For the better part of their set they played songs off of their new album titled Play Along. Not only did they play pretty much all of the songs off of their new Ep they also mixed in songs from their previous albums as well. For the most part their set was filled with a high energy showcase and really only slowing it down for a song or two. Now how often does an opening band get a call for an encore song? Well Stuck On Planet Earth did which almost looked as if it surprised them for the chant so they quickly jumped into one last song.
Up next was Man Cub, I’m starting to lose track on how many times I have watched these guys play live now. Just early on into their set they decided to test the waters and play us a new song off of their upcoming Ep that they are currently working on. I found with their new song that their pop edge has been left off a little bit more and are leaning towards more of a rock sound, which could also be due to the fact that the keys are no longer on the stage as well. It looked as if it took the guys a couple of songs before they got comfortable on stage and started to get into the groove of their set. I’m pretty sure Winston probably played most of the set just by the feel and groove of the song by how relaxed he was up on stage. For the best theatrics of the set I would definitely give the credits to Justin, He quickly and easily took control of the audience that was paying attention to the stage. He also gives a reason in using his own microphone that he brings up onstage. A main key to the bands success is the fact that they have played with each other for so long in Man Cub and in different bands, it seems to me that they almost know exactly what each other is going to do onstage before they play it. It was a bit of a shame that the audience wasn’t entirely into their set compared to what they get when they play to an all ages show.
It is hard for a four piece band to fit onto the Mansion stage and then to watch Amos The Transparent somehow fit onto the stage was pretty interesting. For the most part all of their equipment made it up on the stage and only a Tom drum and a synth keyboard were left to the side and front of the stage. Amos The Transparent were out in support of their new album titled “Goodnight My Dear, I’m Falling Apart”. They played a few songs from the new album; just under half of their set was from the new album. For some reason for most of their set the audience sat back from the stage and hung out behind the couches. Daniel added a little extra bit of show at the start of the set when he used a bow instead of a guitar pick for the first couple of songs; I have seen this done before but it doesn’t happen very often. Jonathan almost took it on as a personal battle to get the audience to come closer and to give them a little more feedback than what was going on throughout their set. He took the time a few times during the set to try and make face with the audience and for the most part the participation paid off for the band. They played a few catchy numbers throughout their set and gave everyone a great preview of their new album which they explained is available for a free download off of their website. One song in particular that stood out for me was the song which Jonathan and Kate sang a duet, her softly mannered vocals under shadowed Jonathans at times but it really helped the overall sound and spirit of the song. The order of their set list got changed up a little on the fly as they were nearing the end of their set. The set list change up quickly threw off a couple members of Amos The Transparent as they started to play the next song then quickly having to play catch up with Jonathan.
To finish off the night Kalle Mattson took to the stage. He started off his set by claiming that he was going to be playing new songs off the new album that they are currently working on and probably all of his set was going to be new for everyone in attendance still. By about the fourth song in his set he managed to bring a couple of people to their feet and dance in front of the stage. His set ranged a bit in genres from folk to pop to light rock. Kalle’s vocals really stood strong when it came to the folk and pop genre of songs. At times in the set it was almost hard to tell that it was Rory making all of the backing sounds and playing lead electric guitar onstage. A few times in the set I was looking around the stage looking for a hidden band in the box because of the sounds and riffs which Rory was adding to the songs especially for the song “Hall Of Oats”. Kalle switched between an electric and two acoustic guitars during the set. There were a few catchy numbers that Kalle played during his set and one of my favourite songs which he played was a heavier song of his called “Thick as Thieves” which he played earlier on in the set. The heaviness of the guitars kind of caught me off guard at the beginning of the song, mostly due to the fact that I was not expecting to hear a song quite like it during the set. Kalle’s audience interaction was great during his set as well; he didn’t have as much issue as Amos The Transparent did earlier on. The real highlight of his set and one of the few on the night for me was the way they finished off their. For Their final song they played “Pick Me Up” which had the band leaving the stage and standing a couple of feet from the stage into the audience. They played the song unplugged with Rory and Kalle on acoustic guitars and everyone else brought along a shaker, a tambourine, trumpet and sang backing harmonies.