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NXNE'08: Kakkmaddafakka, The I Spies, Hey Rosetta!, and Matt Mays & El Torpedo

It was Saturday night, and I was ready to check out Norway's kakkmaddafakka, Toronto's I Spies, Newfoundland's Hey Rosetta! and Dartmouth's Matt Mays & El Torpedo. It was day three of the NXNE festival and I felt fantastic about it, but I was also a little sorry that this would be the last night.

To the El Mo I went, for a 9pm start of Bergen, Norway's Kakkmaddafakka. It took me a moment to grasp what I was saying when pronouncing this bands name, and I recommend not doing it if children are present.

These youngsters were so much fun live! The highflying antics of the keyboardist left me a tad concerned for my safety, as he jumped from the stage, landed right there before me, and gave me a bear-hug before continuing on and dancing into the crowd. Kakkmaddafakka were also playing a late show at 2am, up at Sneaky Dee's. I hope you people up there had as much fun watching them as I did at El Mo.

The I Spies were the only Toronto local band that was on my agenda for the night. I won't say much except that they were great, and you can read a wonderful article about them from just a few days ago here on blogTO.

Next, I headed down to The Legendary Horseshoe Tavern. I couldn't believe what I was seeing. The line-up to get into the Shoe was down to and past the hotdog stand on the corner and almost onto Spadina. CBC was there doing a live broadcast on CBC Radio 3 and Sirius satellite, adding that extra bit of excitement of a live recording to the show.

I was very lucky to get in to catch the start of St. John's, Newfoundland's Hey Rosetta!. This band deserves all the press they've been getting lately. They are wonderful, especially with Tim Baker up front singing his guts out and playing both the guitar and keyboards. Each song started light and slowly, building in intensity and emotion until it hit a feverish pitch. You just watch in amazement as the band brings it, song after song. Please go see this band, and check out their new album Into your Lungs.

At this point, it was so rammed in the Shoe that we could barely move without having to say sorry for bumping into people. Matt Mays & El Torpedo put on one heck of a show. I've seen these guys many times and they've never let me down. Tim Jim is one of my favorite drummers in Canadian music today. He was working it so hard he broke his kick pedal, which gave the band a much-needed breather, and a chance for Matt to tell some pretty awful jokes (they were hilariously awful). It was an amazing show to end a great NXNE 2008.

Photos by: Hargraftphotography

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