Ivory Waves at the Good Will Social Club
By Stylus Staff
Photo By Buio Assis
Big Fun 2018, which took place from January 24th through 28th, unveiled a new crop of exciting and unique locals bands to the city with some heavy hitter headliners thrown in for fun. Big Fun is always a reliable place for Winnipeggers to turn to in the winter months to discover their new favourite band, and this year was no exception. Big Fun was hectic, exhausting but, above all, fun with what seemed like countless musical events happening simultaneously in perfect harmony throughout the weekend.
The Big Fun crew did a great job curating a lineup with something for everyone, including festival standout Veneer opening for Montreal via Calgary’s Braids at the West End Cultural Centre; and housepanther’s delightfully catchy power pop opening up for Spooky Eyes, who had everyone at the Handsome Daughter bopping along to their indie rock gems. Also notable were notme with their epic hard shoegaze influenced rock; Black Cloud with their darkest performance to date, which had them performing in balaclavas at the Sherbrook Inn; and Jaywood bringing a new energy to the Good Will with their psychedelic jazz tunes that everyone loved.
The festival kicked off on Wednesday evening with a packed crowd at the Ballroom, which is only used one night a year for musical performances. The audience was treated to some foot stomping singalongs from Matt Foster while Calgary’s Foonyap changed up the pace with their unique meld of ambient neo-folk, which was perfectly suited for the venue’s brilliant atmosphere.
Daytime shows took place at Forth Projects and featured a nice blend of folk,singer songwriting, experimental, and ambient music. Highlights of the afternoon sets included Family Injera and respectfulchild, ambient artists from Alberta. Both effortlessly created a surreal and mystical atmosphere with their immersive sets with the smell and smoke of incense in the air.
There was some epic sludge metal courtesy of Montreal’s Big Brave, which shook the Sherbook Inn like a sharp raging hammer. This was a cool contrast to last year’s show at the Sherb which was hip hop oriented.
Animal Teeth closed out the festival performing old and new material which all sounded like beautiful slowcore. The band was joined by members of Veneer which was a nice community moment, and musically, they were a wonderful addition on vocals, keyboard and saxophone.
Congratulations to Big Fun on another amazing festival!