On Tuesday night, July Talk played to a sold out crowd at the Fredericton Boyce Farmers Market.
I had first heard of the Canadian band in my first year, and though I liked what I’d heard then, I didn’t explore their music any further. Last year, though, a friend gushed about how amazing and intense their live performance was, so when I heard they were coming to Fredericton, I knew it was a show I couldn’t miss.
Now, my friend loves to tell a good story, and she painted July Talk as the dream live performance. But when she launched into a tale of a lead singer crawling through banisters mid-show, I felt some skepticism arise. Just how wild was this band?
I can say now with near certainty that the only thing keeping the band out of the banisters at the Boyce Farmer’s Market Tuesday night was gravity. The two main singers, Peter Dreimanis and Leah Fay, lit up the stage with their sultry voices and on-stage chemistry, backed by a guitarist, bassist and drummer who maintained their high energy from start to finish. That they were there to put on a show was undisputed.
July Talk easily won the hearts of the crowd with their infectious energy and head-banging sound. The market turned into a dance party from the moment they stepped on stage. I loved how obvious it was that they were having so much fun up there—their crazy facial expressions, with dancing eyes and mischievous grins, told me that this wasn’t just a treat for me, but for them, too.
The band played their hearts out but made plenty of time in-between songs to connect with the crowd.
Dreimanis took a break from head-banging on a keyboard by switching back to his guitar, which he took with him into the crowd while shredding a solo, riding on the wave of enthusiastic fans who lifted him up above their heads.
During the next song, Fay was out in the crowd, playful and coy as she made people in the audience do the limbo with her mic cord. Moments later she was lifted onto one guy’s shoulders, singing her way back to the stage. Later, she even took out a bottle of wine and poured drinks into open mouths at the front of the stage.
Fay was a performer through and through, the high, sweet pitch of her voice was the perfect complement to Dreimanis’ raspy growl. When she spoke, her words were full of humility and gratitude, a vibe exuded from the whole band.
Dreimanis and Fay took countless opportunities to thank all of those involved in making the show and their music possible. The manager of the Capital Complex received a first-name shoutout, while the band also acknowledged the warm reception Maritime musicians had to given them—a kindness equally displayed by the fans they’d met on the East Coast, the band assured.
Needless to say, it wasn’t long after the band put their instruments down for the last time before the crowd began to chant: “One more song, one more song!”
They needed little convincing, quickly returning to rock the Farmers Market with two more songs before saying their final goodbyes for the night, having delivered a solid hour and a half of pure energy and pure rock and roll.
I knew as I walked out the doors and down the sidewalks of George Street that July Talk had won themselves a fan for life. And I felt in the crowd around me that mine was not the only heart they’d captured that night.