Published Aug 01, 2008Alright, so some other bands played, and they were actually all amazing. But that's not the point. This night represented the kind of insane, Disney-movie punk rock story that just doesn't happen, ever, mostly because Disney doesn't make punk rock movies.
While openers the Artist Life, Living with Lions, and A Wilhelm Scream are all glorious bands in their own ways, this night belonged to Mississauga's the Fullblast, who came together for one night after an unexpected break-up in 2006 left fans without a proper farewell show.
Formed eight years ago, the band played the kind of fast and earnest punk rock popularized by Lifetime, but with a more technical spin and a keen ear for unbelievably catchy breakdowns. Unlike the recent Opera House reunion of 905 punk heroes Grade, the Fullblast were never a genre-defining, seminal act; they were just really great and special to a lot of people. Which is what, ultimately, made the fact that they effortlessly sold out the Reverb, upgraded to the Opera House, and then sold it out just as fast so fucking cool (the band played Lee's Palace to 25 kids three years ago, seriously).
And with expectations high, they couldn't have delivered a more note-perfect performance. It possessed all the charm of their earliest shows and all the sheer technical ability of their last; and because the Fullblast were the kind of band that were more important to individuals and a community than a genre as a whole, the energy and enthusiasm of the show was literally unlike anything I've ever experienced.
Ripping through every one of their best, most well-known songs (including their first-ever ditty, "Miss You), the set ended with perennial favourite "Lee Majors, Now There's a Man in his Prime, and with six years worth of former band members all piled on the stage, along with friends, family, and half the crowd, it felt less like a band reunion and more like every fun, romanticized part of high school crammed into a shitty bar for three and a half minutes. Exploding.