Hot New Band: Simmer

I had been in the mood to have a few drinks in a non-cave setting (which is usually asking a lot of a Toronto rock venue). I'd had my fill of screamo bands, pop-punk and run-of-the-mill rock.
I wanted something melodic that expressed quiet personal moments, erupting into a thunderous assault of guitars and drums.
I needed a singer with a confident voice, unafraid to really belt it out from the diaphram. Then Simmer hit the stage.

"That one guitar player looks familiar," my friend remarked. I was hit with De Ja Vu as well. After a few minutes, we realized he had ALSO played drums in Ego, the cover band that had played earlier! What an energetic and multi-talented guy, we thought.

Carlo danced with his bass, expressing a look of total focus and serenity. I liked that Carlo and guitarist Jonathan had a symbiotic relationship and Carlo didn't just always shadow the guitar riffs, as many bassists tend to do. I had spoken with him before and found him to be genuinely nice and friendly. He's perhaps the biggest promoter for the band, unafraid to recruit new fans online and always armed with stickers (which he plans to plaster in every rock venue washroom).

Jonathan provided the catchy guitar riffs for us, driving and punky at times, harmonious and melodic at other times, but always managing to capture your attention.

The singer Chris blew me away with his addictive melodies and strong holds. I could detect influences like Incubus and Jimmy Eat World but he has a sound that's very much his own. Most importantly, he's willing to take you on a very engaging, personal journey.


Club 279 proved to be the optimal climate for the band with its non-intrusive lighting and high quality sound. The band's true power lies in their versatility... the softs are intimate and the louds are rewarding. Ballads like "Play Fire" are relaxing and the mellowest rock you'll ever hear me listening to. Then when "Bombs Away" came pouring through the speakers with its monumental buildups, I noticed goosebumps rising on the surface of my skin. It's been a while since I felt so utterly content to be at a show, not looking at my surroundings, not wishing for a beer, not feeling tired, just rocking out. It's almost a spiritual feeling where you just KNOW you're engaged in the optimal activity for that moment in time. So THIS feeling is why I'm such a concert junkie!

At the end of the night, I truly feel Simmer's one of those bands that just really plays well together, each tone complementing the others, resulting in an enjoyable evening for everyone. Just wait. You'll find yourself humming to these tunes later on.


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