Concerts Concerts Ottawa Bluesfest 2012: A Day of Firsts

Ottawa Bluesfest 2012: A Day of Firsts

The Wooden Sky at LeBreton Flats
Ottawa Bluesfest 2012
The Wooden Sky, The Bright Light Social Hour
LeBreton Flats in Ottawa, ON
July 7, 2012

Review by: Lisa Truong
Photos by:
Jamie Kronick

Concert festivals are often the place for firsts – seeing bands for the first time, hearing new songs being played, and discovering gems.

The Wooden Sky

I started Bluesfest a little late and The Wooden Sky kicked off my week of concerts. This was my first time seeing them live, only having listened to their albums on Bandcamp after noticing their name popping up everywhere.

The soft, folk tunes that I had become accustomed to were transformed into a rocking, toe-tapping performance. Though the crowd seemed reserved at the beginning of the set, by the fourth song, “Angels”, the crowd became more animated and the band seemed to feed off the energy. Upon introducing “The Late King Henry”, they took the opportunity to bring awareness to the Save the Gatineau campaign, which is dedicated to stopping the transformation of the Gatineau River into a lagoon.

In a surprise twist, the band launched into a cover of Nirvana’s “All Apologies”, which even got those who stood like pillars throughout the set singing along and nodding their heads. The final song, “Something Hiding For Us In The Night” was a slow, intense tune touchingly dedicated by Andrew Wyatt (bass) to his father. Though the crowd for the most part calmly watched the show, by the end it was clear they appreciated the solid performance by the band.

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The Bright Light Social Hour

One of the main perks of attending concert festivals is the opportunity to stumble upon some truly stunning acts, and The Bright Light Social Hour was one band Jamie and I were fortunate enough to catch. Hailing from Austin, Texas, it was obvious the band had a strong following; the lawn was packed in front of the main stage, people were singing along and there was no doubt that newcomers were glued to their performance.

With their long hair whipping about, lead singer and guitarist Curtis Roush belted out their version of rock and roll – an infectious concoction of southern rock, blues, dance and soul. “Detroit” was my favourite of the set with its sexy, drawn out first lyrics and chorus that demonstrated keyboardist A.J. Vincent’s incredible range. Though there were other acts I wanted to see, I found myself captured by their dynamic performance and unwilling to leave.

After the set, their catchy guitar riffs and rhythms helped me relive the show upon listening to their self-titled debut album. The Bright Light Social Hour is a must-see. Toronto has the opportunity on July 27 at Yonge-Dundas Square’s Indie Fridays. Do not miss them!