Alexisonfire frontman takes the screamo game seriously
With: Spitalfield and Death From Above
Where : Garfinkels
When: Friday, Oct. 3. Doors at 9 p.m.
Tickets : $10
Turn on MuchMusic. Youre bound to hear a "coming up next" announcement for a video from Alexisonfire before too long. The video watching demographic loves the southern Ontario five-piece band, named after a lactating contortionist porn-star, and their devotion has given the band a solid berth in the audience-voted PowerShift Top 30 chart.
Quickly, before the video comes on, hit the mute button. There they are five high-energy kids in their late-teens/early 20s. The next Not by Choice/Simple Plan-Blink 182 incarnation? Hit the mute button again.
Surprise. Instead of the punk-pop du jour its a frenetic, edgy metal-punk mix topped with intense screaming vocals. A blast of aural adrenaline. The kind of music that makes older generations give up on pop culture.
Some call it screamo, a hybrid term describing the thoughtful lyrics of the emo-set yelled with abandon. But George Pettit, the 20-year-old, dorky-cool frontman isnt too concerned with classification specifics.
"Im pretty comfortable with whatever anyone wants to call us," says Pettit. "I have no problem with genres. If someone wants to call us screamo, they can call us screamo. They can call us emo-core they can call us scream-punk they can call us punk-core they can call us punk-scream-punk-core-scream, and yell-punk-core-scream. I dont care. If it makes it easier to describe us to someone else, just call us whatever."
So just how does Pettit himself describe Alexisonfires music?
"I just say were a yelly-screamy rock band."
Mr. screamy-yelly himself speaks rapid fire, like a hyperactive pixie-stick junkie whos lost his Ritalin. To compound the situation, hes currently at West Edmonton Mall: over-stimulation central. Dolphins are flipping through the air as he speaks. Later that night the band will play Mall superclub Reds, the Chuck E. Cheese of the Edmonton nightclub scene complete with arcade games and its own bowling alley. Pettit is stoked.
"Its absolutely fantastic. All the money we make tonight can be blown on video games," he enthuses. "West Edmonton Mall is an absolute trip. Its crazy here. Theres a shooting gallery. I shot firearms earlier today."
With his dark shag and thick black glasses, Pettit could be the fourth Hanson Brother. But looks aside, it could be argued his band is the Canadian music industrys own version of the iconic Slapshot goons. Theyre young, in your face, and are selling out venues with their aggressive style.