POST-POUZZA BLUES

June 6, 2017

Pouzza Fest 7 was everything that is  great about Punk Rock Fests! It’s awesome bands, good people, great beer, a variety of food and all happening in a wicked city.

I was fortunate enough to once again get to play twice this year. First on the Friday night with Plan 37. We played to a packed Foufs 2.0. It was only my second gig back with the band and it felt awesome. We had a few minor challenges with the back-line that was provided but like true punk soldiers we locked in on our sound and groove and delivered a solid 30 minute set. My first gig back with Plan 37 took place a few days earlier in Toronto when we supported Off With Their Heads at The Bovine Sex Club.

Saturday at Pouzza was mostly Megan and I hopping around from venue to venue catching some great bands including a stellar set from Iron Chic with guest vocals from RVIVR.  I was also interviewed by the great people at Bucketlist Music Reviews.

Sunday afternoon I performed my solo set at the Foufs BBQ and Merch Tent. I had a nice crowd come out and got to perform a Leatherface cover for Graeme from Leatherface. No pressure there of course… After my set Seth Anderson did his thing. Seth was amazing as always.

By the end of the weekend Megan and I caught roughly 25 performances, ate several slices of pizza and crushed a ton of PBRs. As always its a great so amazing to get to perform at these kinds of events for such passionate people. Montreal is a beautiful and I can’t wait to return.

HBD EJV

 

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cactus vella podcastI was very fortunate to be asked to be the first ever guest on the new Stereo Dynamite Podcast. It was a great honor to sit back with my good friend and Toronto alumni Adam Sewel as we chatted for a good 30 minutes in his Parkdale office on a cold January night.

In the podcast we talk about Whiskey Hearts, The Class Assassins, growing up in Vaughan, Sinkin’ Ships, my graphic Design company Anxiety Attack Designs and many other things. After recording the podcast we hung out for a while and I was lucky enough to hear some brand new tracks from the upcoming Simone Denny record on Stereo Dynamite Recordings… and Damn they sound awesome!

So if you have half an hour and want to hear two dudes shoot the breeze about this and that give the first episode of the new Stereo Dynamite Podcast featuring your truely a listen.

Click here to check it out.

DYINGSCENE 06Posted by Dyingscene.com on Friday, July 25, 2014 at 10:48 AM (PST)

In good news, the guys in Toronto punk act The Class Assassins have released a music video for their song “Start Again.” In not so good news, they have also announced the departure of longtime guitarist Cactus Vella, who is leaving the band to focus on his solo work.

The music video and a statement from Vella can be found below.

“Start Again” appears on The Class Assassins’ Treason 7-inch, which was released back in 2011 through Rebel Time Records. The band’s latest release, a 9-minute ‘concept single’ entitled The Addiction & The Solution came out last March.

 

Cactus Sings Springsteen coverThis past week Cactus released a free download of “Cactus Sings Springsteen”, two Bruce Springsteen covers. The download features “Going Down” from the “Thunder Road” compilation released earlier this year, as well as “Hungry Heart”, an out-take from that same recording session.

Both songs feature Katie Kaboom of The Mahones on accordion and were recorded by Moby Holman who also recorded the “Sailin’ On” EP in 2012.

Speaking of the “Thunder Road” comp, a big thank you to everyone who has supported it. We’ve reached over 100000 plays from the bandcamp page alone!

CACTUS SINGS SPRINGSTEEN 2The good people at DyingScene wrote this little blurb about the release of “Cactus Sings Springsteen”.

Posted by DyingScene.com on Thursday, July 10, 2014 at 1:51 PM (PST)

Toronto’s favorite punk rock solo artist Cactus Vella has released a short EP entitled Cactus Covers Springsteen, featuring covers of Bruce Springsteen’s “Going Down” and “Hungry Heart.” You can stream and/or download it for free below.

Vella’s debut EP Sailin’ On was released in December of 2012. That’s also available on his Bandcamp page.

DYING SCENE 04Posted by JerryLowLife on Tuesday, May 13, 2014 at 9:26 AM (PST)

Anxiety Attack Recordings have released a new compilation album called Thunder Road.  The album is a folk-punk tribute to Bruce Springsteen and features Cactus VellaJon Creeden, Jesse LeBourdais, The Matchup, and more!

Give it a listen below, and if you like what you hear, you can download it for free.

DYING SCENE 03Posted by JerryLowLife on Tuesday, May 13, 2014 at 11:12 AM (PST)
Toronto’s own punk rockers Dogs are streaming their new self-titled 7 inch EP, and you can check it out below.Dogs features members of Summer of 92 as well as Cactus Vella of The Class Assassins and Whiskey Hearts.  They will be playing at Pouzza Fest in Montreal on May 17.

The EP was released by Rubber Factory Records.

STENCH RADIO AND REVERBNATION

February 17, 2014

STENCHRADIOThis Monday I’ll be the special guest on Stench Radio out of Illinois. I’m pretty excited to talk about some new stuff like upcoming Cactus shows, The Class Assassins, Whiskey Hearts, Pouzzafest, the new Anxiety Attack Recording, the Toronto scene, and more. I’ll also be making a very special announcement…. The show airs Monday Feb 17th at 10pm on stenchradio.com

REVERBNATION CHARTS 01Just a reminder for all of you who use ReverbNation to check out my page. I have songs and videos posted, as well all of my show listings are kept up to date. I’ve also created some cool tshirts that you can order directly from the site. Click here to check out my page and become a ‘fan’.

G33K 01Published on July 24th, 2013 | by MISTY

5 Questions with Whiskey Hearts

Toronto’s Whiskey Hearts are proof that punk rockers don’t just get old and get put out to pasture. Instead, they get together with some of their best friends and make music that is every bit as rebellious, without rules but including a few new instruments. Gone are the distorted, electric guitars and heavy drums, replaced with acoustics; stand up bass, banjo, fiddle and whatever else is part of their collective that day.

G33KPRON were present for Whiskey Hearts’  NXNE show with Saint Alvia at the Hard Luck Bar last month, and couldn’t leave without wanting to know more so we spoke to one of the band’s founders, Toronto musician Cactus Vella to ask him our famous five questions.

Read the rest of this entry »

EXCLAIM TV PERFORMANCE

June 5, 2013

EXCLAIM 02Posted by http://exclaim.ca Tue June 4, 2013

Over the past two decades, Toronto rocker Cactus Vella has been spreading his passionate brand of punk, but has recently shifted his focus to acoustic music. He has merged this newfound passion with his old one, and accordingly, labeled it “acoustic punk.”

The term fits his new music perfectly, as we learned when he came by our back patio to record a session. The song, “Ship Wreck,” has yet to appear on an album, but its full of Vella’s trademarks, including a strong nautical theme, gruff vocals, and a simple-yet-effective chord pattern. Watch the video below. Read the rest of this entry »

Exclaim shoot 01 smThis past weekend I was fortunate enough to be invited to the Exclaim headquarters to film a few songs. The shoot took place on the back patio in the same spot where Chuck Ragan was filmed a year earlier. I performed “Summer Nights” and  my newest song “Ship Wreck”. It was pretty cool playing back there, and the neighbors seemed to enjoy it. The two-man crew were great to work with, and I’m very thankful for the experience. Exclaim will post one of these videos on their website in the near future.

EXCLAIM 01

Whiskey Hearts recently filmed our debut music video with director Brendan Coutts. Brendan was the guitarist in the Ontario based punk band The Heatskores. But more than that he is an exceptionally talented director.
The video was shot at The Press Club during a Whiskey Hearts event. The crowd was unaware of the video shoot for the most part. The end result is a very honest music video. The video also features our good friend and part-time Whiskey Heart Lionel Stanley on the Mandolin.

The good folk at Exclaim were kind enough to premier our debut music video for us!

Check it out the article here. Or go straight to the video here.

Posted by http://musicshebloggedinterviews.blogspot.ca Wednesday, April 11, 2013

MUSICSHEBLOGGED 01
You’ve been playing in Toronto punk bands since I first started playing with Pogs…
What are some of your best memories from the 90’s punk scene in Toronto?

I was lucky enough to get into the Toronto punk scene at such a great time. There was amazing bands like Blundermen, Hockey Teeth, One Blood, Wad, The Satanatras, Problem Children, Mudfish, and so many more. There was an awesome place called Project X. Every Sunday afternoon there would be great all-ages shows for the kids. The scene was a lot of fun. It was also a lot tougher. There was violence, but there was comfort in knowing that people had your back. You really did pay your dues back then….  Read the rest of this entry »