Saturday, October 01, 2016

Harrison, Allie and Clairmont The Second at Velvet Underground

From Indoor Recess twitter
Last night locals, Harrison, Allie and Clairmont The Second all took the stage at Queen Street's Velvet Underground. The party follows the release of Harrison's debut album, Checkpoint Titanium which features both Allie and Clairmont The Second as guest vocalists. Both openers took advantage of The Velvet Underground's small space, injecting the audience with incredible energy. Much like the last time I saw Clairmont The Second (with Tennyson at The Great Hall basement), the energetic performer took to the crowd, literally bringing his vivacity to them first hand. This was one of the themes of the night, the local, community and family feel that was ever present.

It was a special night for Clairmont who was celebrating his 19th birthday, with his crew/family there documenting the whole night, which was also the last of his tour (which saw him play 5 cities in as many nights). Many of the attendees were well versed in Clairmont's songs, singing along while riding along his dynamic delivery and flow. By the time Harrison took the stage, the crowd's energy hit a boiling point as the headliner was joined by a guitarist for a dreamy, illusory intro, at once grabbing the audience's attention and energy. He then proceeded to bring up both Allie and Clairmont for their respective tracks, "Vertigo" and "It's Okay I Promise."

By this time the crowd's energy (and perhaps inebriation) was absolutely overflowing. Dance battles were breaking out with Harrison's tracks making people faint into their friends arms. There was one particular patron whose signature move was miming a trust fall not just into his friends but into random, unsuspecting guests. This boisterous bumping was perhaps commanded by Harrison who at one point took to the mic to tell us "If you're looking at me, you're doing it wrong. Dance! Dance with yourself." This was really taken to heart by the crowd who were absolutely eating up everything Harrison brought to the table.

The who's who of Toronto electronic artists were there in support of these three fast rising talents. Sighted in the crowd were Pusher, Chet Porter, Grandtheft and Ryan Hemsworth, who also took the stage alongside Harrison, first to play their collaborative effort "Vanilla." After that success, the two played what seemed to be an impromptu B2B set which lasted a good 15 minutes until Harrison took the decks back for himself, playing popular tracks such as his remix of Nelly Furtado's "Turn Off The Light," "Right Hook" and album title track "Checkpoint Titanium." Just before the clock struck 2AM, Harrison once again invited Hemsworth to join him on stage where they declared their desire to play until security kicked them off. Despite the now dwindling numbers, the two continued to command the crowds attention dropping the likes of Shiba San's "Okay," Riton's "Rinse & Repeat," and new Mr. Oizo and Siriusmo, "All Wet."
From Ryan Hemsworth's twitter
Overall the night had the distinct feel that these young artists are the future of the Toronto scene. Harrison's combination of sound and style, new and old, and live performance are clearly forward thinking and provide a truly enjoyable experience. Even twitter account @HungoverFromFun addressed this fact, calling the three performers "the future of Toronto." Expect your friends to become familiar with the names Harrison, Allie and Clairmont The Second as the three continue to strengthen their stranglehold on the Toronto scene and expand into the mainstream consciousness.