Before offering up any sort of greeting to the crowd, the first thing spoken into the mic at Bully’s Thursday night show was a request from Alicia Bognanno for the stage lights to be turned down if possible. This could have been because the lights were a bit too bright for her comfort (likely) or it could have been a sign that the band didn’t really want to be seen. Luckily this wasn’t the case and soon enough the band was sufficiently amped up and rocking out for a fairly packed house at Lee’s Palace. Crisis averted.
Bognanno, who proved herself to be an engaging frontwoman, also shared with the crowd that she’d been to Tim Horton’s earlier and gave a shout out to Tim’s pretzel bagels. There’s loads of better places she could have eaten before the show, but hey, when in Canada, I guess you’ve gotta go for some Timmies.
Aye Nako opened the show with a set focusing on numbers from their latest Silver Haze. The band has described their music as “Sad punk songs about being queer, trans and black” and definitely seems to mine its songwriters’ pasts for subject material, with Jade Payne offering up that one song was about growing up as a Jehovah’s Witness, while Mars Dixon introduced another as “a sad song about my childhood” before adding, “I’m happy now.” The band’s personal lyrics and ’90s-referencing guitar riffs made for a potent mix and an impressive live show, despite the fact that they played to a significantly smaller crowd than the headliners.
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