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Five Alarm Funk & The Bad Mothers @ Phog Lounge

Sunday July 10th, 2011, 10:00am


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In less than a year, Vancouver’s Five Alarm Funk has played at Phog Lounge three times, yet even at this last show on Friday July 8th, a sign on the door read that it was sold out well before the band was set to play.

At $12 for an advance ticket, the price was a bit higher than what would normally be found at Phog, but clearly even that was no deterrent for music fans in Windsor, as the cozy club was full to bursting between the 9-man band and all those who came out to watch.

Five Alarm Funk employed three percussionists, 3 horn players, 2 guitars and a bass to put out some of the rockinest dance tunes at Windsor’s favourite music club.

An eclectic sound that can be difficult to describe, F.A.F. blurs the lines between genres, mixing funk, ska, soul, rock, and reggae to create a groove that is upbeat, energetic, and is sure to get the booties of the entire crowd shaking.

While playing, the band outputs an infectious energy through their on-stage antics and choreographed dance moves. They also make some pretty great faces while performing, which makes for a show in itself.

A big band with a big sound, when they took the stage (and then some) at Phog their sound stayed distinct, even with everything that was going on, although there were a few times I’d see someone wailing into a microphone but hear nothing. That took nothing from the show, however, as Five Alarm Funk‘s music does not hinge on vocals, and is instead carried by the pulsating, driving rhythms perfectly designed to stimulate the brain’s dance centre.

To open the show we heard from Windsor’s The Bad Mothers, a 4-piece playing smooth and funky cover tunes, with an amazingly rich and distinct sound. The only funk group going in the city right now, when you get a chance to see them, take it. They’re worth the time.

To hear clips from the show and an interview with the band, tune into The Windsor Scene on CJAM 99.1 FM (or stream live at on Wednesday, July 13th between 5 and 630 pm.

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