In a feat of brilliant programming, Party Cannon (who put on shows in unusual places around Sudbury) teamed up with the Northern Lights fest to get our favourite East Coast power trio, TUNS, on a mini-cruise around Lake Ramsey with local garage trio Ape-ettes, all on a cute little ferry with cheap beer, summery weather and great views.
Unfortunately, nobody thought to test the microphones pre-departure. The Ape-ettes' singer Julie Katrinette, celebrating her birthday yesterday, soldiered on with the spotty mic, which only worked intermittently, her band dishing out blistering tunes anyway. When it came time for TUNS to take the "stage," Chris Murphy took the unreliable microphone, which turned out to be pretty funny; Murphy's natural conversational bent was only somewhat stymied by a lack of amplification.
A pyramid is a powerful shape because the three corners of its base provide an excellent foundation, and TUNS are the Beatles-loving musical equivalent. Their songs are harmony-laden and powerful, benefitting from the input of three brilliant songwriters: Murphy, Mike O'Neill (The Inbreds) and Matt Murphy (The Super Friendz). The trio zoomed through as much of their new album as they could in half an hour, playing "Mixed Messages," "To Your Satisfaction," "I Can't Wait Forever" and their ear worm "Mind Over Matter" before squeezing one final one in: appropriately, "Back Among Friends," literally as the ship docked ("music to a deadline," a friend quipped).
It couldn't be as generous of a set as the one they'd played Friday (July 7) on the main stage, but, fittingly for a band that clearly get a kick out of making music together, it was intimate, and above all, fun.