The Show? Incredible. The Vibes? Immaculate. Gin and Juice? Yes please.
For something fun to do in Montreal, OnARollRecords takes on the Diving Bell Social club to see Frase and Fawna on a brisk Thursday night June 2nd 2022. The street of St Laurent was feeling a little quieter than usual other than the regular sports and music fans smoking outside of the bars, and after a quick slice of pizza and impromptu meet up with @Tuggras.official we were ready to head into the venue to check out what they had to offer.
The stage was set, DJ setup, drums, microphone, guitars and even a couple of people playing connect 4 at one of the tables slightly offstage (the most important to any venue of course). We sat down, put a few tables together and we were ready for action. The first performers went up with the self acclaimed “Not a rapper” who Dj’s, plays the Sax and (you guessed it) raps, but he’s not a rapper. Don’t forget it. There were also a few other singers, rappers and even trumpeters from the Montreal music scene. This act felt like more of a Jam session than anything else, just a bunch of guys chilling and playing whatever feels right in the moment. They did bring the fun vibes but it felt a bit different at times as we were watching more the process of a show being created than the show itself. Still, it was interesting to see a band in the process of creation as every 10-15 minutes a new rapper or musician would come up on stage adding to the ambience, starting from the DJ and ending with a full ensemble. It was at this point where we decided it was a good idea to get some Gin and Juice in the system, served in a beer glass but just as good as ever. The first act decided to play some of their top songs to end off their set and give a nice transition to the headliners, Frase and Fawna.
Now it was time for what we were waiting for and Frase, Fawna and the rest of the band took the stage, cool as cucumbers. Before Frase went on, we all mostly stayed seated for the other performances but as soon as we heard the first notes we all knew that it was time to stand up and get as close as possible. They even had a bright pink “FRASE” sign in the background, iconic. Frase, completely decked out in a Hawaiian shirt, bucket hat and sunglasses that would make my mother jealous, absolutely blew us out of the water. The music was immediately vibe worthy, starting off with two slow songs that really got everyone listening to the slow melodic rhythm. This led to an excellent transition into some faster paced and more upbeat songs as the speed up from slower to faster paced music pulled everyone in, then went on to hype us all up. The variety of the songs was also very intriguing as there was a beautiful mix of emotional songs coupled up with some fun tunes which made it feel more like a well rounded show.
I think that my personal favorite of the night was the song “Fanny Pack” where the main hook is “I got too many things in my fanny pack, shoulda brought my Backpack” which was just a fun loving song to listen to as well as extremely relatable as I was currently standing in the crowd with my fanny pack where I did indeed, have to many things and should have brought my backpack. The style of music felt to me like a mix between funk and almost psychedelic in nature as it was the type of music to really pull you out of the real world and into that realm of notes and chords.
The music played felt authentic and it was nice to see local Montreal artists perform with so much passion. Everyone in the audience could tell how much not just Frase but how much everyone on stage cared about their craft. The voice, look and the hand motions just let everyone know that the performers really love what they do. Even though it wasn’t the biggest crowd in the world it just felt right, everyone was into it and we were all there to sip some drinks and listen to some quality music.
If you’re ever looking for something fun to do on Saint Laurent, consider going to the Diving Bell Social Club to catch a local Montreal artist, and maybe pick up a few G and T’s while you’re at it.