Live Show: 8/10/97


Toronto, ON

Reviewed by: Chris O'Malley & ??

The Details

Hadn't seen Moxy with home field advantage in over half a year. I missed the Canada Day show in July, so it was nice to see the guys back on their "home turf", only blocks away from where Fruvous began.

I attended a bachelor party on Saturday night, which lasted till the wee hours of the morning. However, I was still able to scrape myself out of bed, shave my tongue, and get on the road by nine on Sunday morning. I got to Mike and Kelly's in Buffalo by ten, and by eleven we drove up and met Laurie at the bridge to Canada.

Laurie and I stopped by Heather's in Toronto to pick her and Katie up, and the four of us took the streetcar to the festival. The Taste of the Danforth festival is on Danforth (imagine that), and the street is all roped off; vendors line the streets selling food of all kinds. Most of it was Greek food, since the road goes right through the Greek area of Toronto.

The stage was nestled on a road that intersects Danforth, so the setting was more intimate than I was anticipating. There were some picnic tables set up, but a lot of us sat on the pavement. Despite the onset of a little rain earlier that day, the sun was shining, but thanks to some clouds in the sky, it wasn't that hot. The humidity was a bit high, but the light breeze helped a lot.

Around half past three in the afternoon, Tory Chassis (sp?) and his band went on. Very cool. I saw him last fall opening for Moxy, and was really impressed. They're getting a CD out soon, and just signed with a record label.

After tons of technical holdups (not related to Cal or Moxy), and watching Cal for my first time get the sound just right, Moxy came on stage a little past five. They played a fairly long set, considering the fact that normal festival sets tend to be shorter. The crowd response was great, and they even said that they felt this was one of the best Toronto shows they'd had in a long time.

Afterwards, Laurie, Heather and Kelly headed to Hamilton to see Great Big Sea, while Mike, the kids and I headed back home. I didn't pull into Rochester till eleven (which struck me as odd since we left Toronto at 7:30, but oh well).

Hello's go out to Melissa, Jude, and Rosemary (whom I'd finally met after all this time!)

Turns out Moxy will be back in Toronto for Labor Day. Can't wait!!

From anonymous:

It had taken the eternally punctual VIA Rail 30 minutes longer than it should have to get me there, but at last I arrived back at my home, Scarborough (or shall I simply say "Toronto"?). I had made a sudden decision that Friday to take control of my life and quit Ottawa for the weekend so that I could see Fru-lads perform at the Taste of the Danforth Festival. As usual, the Fruvous Four didn't let me down.

That Sunday, I met a friend downtown a couple of hours before the concert was to start which gave us plenty of time to catch up as well as meander the streets where tables of Greek food were set up. The time finally came for us to make our way over to the venue. I was not sure what to expect, but when we got there I knew that this was not what I'd had in mind. The stage was set up in a small parking lot and in front of this make-shift stage were 4 picnic benches (which of course were taken long before my friend and I got there). The rest was sun-baked asphalt on which the patient concert goers had begun to seat themselves. My friend and I found ourselves a good spot and plunked ourselves down to wait--and wait we did. We were fortunate enough to be witnesses to the entire set-up of the Fruvous equipment, every mike adjustment, every instrument test. Finally, after forty-five tedious minutes, the band came out.

The strangest thing happened when the guys came on stage: the crowd stood up. It seemed that to applaud was not the reason for this mass movement; actually, I strongly suspect that the majority of the people there were new to this band. I discovered later that the crowd had not stood up to dance either; I found I was one of the few bouncing around to the beat. All in all, it seemed a most peculiar group. (I wonder if the guys felt the same...)

As usual, the Four supplied us with a lot of bizarre banter (eg. Why was there still a campaign sign hanging up on yonder wall after the election was over? After some discussion, the reasonable conclusion was reached that the poster was there so that this man was likely going to try to get re-elected and he was just starting his campaigning early.) I got a real kick out of the stories of their experiences in the States. They were feeling self-conscious about their "Canadian ticks" such as the word "eh". Every time they did a concert in the U.S., one of them would inevitably say "eh". The crowds, of course, would pick up on this which, in itself, was not a problem. It was the way in which they drew attention to the Canadianism by calling it out while pointing at the guys, something which made the band somewhat uncomfortable. The banter that afternoon also included a few minutes devoted to an analysis of Dave's attire, which included the infamous plastic pants.

Highlight for me: Murray spoke!!! He actually got a fair bit of airtime, unlike the last concert I went to at Ottawa's National Library where Murray said all of two words.

There were lots of problems with the sound equipment, even after all the tinkering in the beginning, but the guys kept their good humour despite it all. They laughed off a mild microphone screech which occurred just as they were to start Horseshoes; they put off the song a few minutes and honoured us with tidbits of songs whose lyrics usually only one of the guys would know (Mike pulled "Inchworm" out of his hat).

As for the setlist, I could not give it to you in order (had no pen and paper). Let's see if I can list the songs... Get in the Car, BJ, GE&H, I Love my Boss, MARION FRUVOUS :D (haven't heard that in YEARS!), Today's the Day We Fight Back, Fly, Michigan Militia, Love Potion #9 medley, Your New Boyfriend, Johnny Saucep'n, You will go to the Moon, Lazlo's Career, Medicine Show, King of Spain, Drinking Song (encore)

Seeing these guys is always the most incredible experience. The way in which they work together never ceases to amaze me. There was a slight mishap which resulted from Jian's uncontainable enthusiasm, specifically his Tigger-like bouncing. He knocked over Mike's microphone during one of the songs in which Mike does the lead and plays guitar. While Jian caught it just before it hit the ground, Dave slipped in to share his mike with Mike. All this happened with no lapse in the singing. It was very nicely done. I was impressed. (Still am.)

So that is my jolted version of the Taste of the Danforth (or "T.O.D." as the guys called it) concert. It was a great time. Funny, I didn't miss Ottawa one bit :)

The Pictures

Click the description to get the pic:

The Music

Opened with The Set Closed with Encore 1

Misc. Info

Some other tidbits from the performance include:

Back to the tour dates 1997 page