Big Band Punk?

Category: music 330

Toronto weirdos The Holy Gasp announce shows in Moncton and Saint John as part of fall tour.

Adam Wright

The Holy Gasp don’t take themselves too seriously. The music? Most definitely. The expected bullshit that goes along with being in a band? Not so much.

Their bio says it all.

Formed in Toronto by an ugly child and his crippled dog, The Holy Gasp is not concerned with your entertainment; it is concerned with the ways in which you engage yourself–the ways in which you surrender to the Community of Sound, and drain the black tar from your heart. They look a bit like a jazz sextet. They sound a bit like a bunch of junkies singing Surfin’ Bird with a bad case of the shits. Dig that. No more questions. Y’know?

Described by one reviewer as “a cult band that hasn’t become cult yet’, The Holy Gasp definitely have their own thing going on. 

The band will make their first trip past Quebec City later this month with dates in Halifax and New Brunswick. 

As a lead up to the tour and the release of their sophomore album, the followup to 2015’s The Last Generation of Love, the band shared a new single this week. Described as “the disgruntled millennial response to Green Day’s Longview”, Beat Wave is a frantic airing of grievances and a crisis fueled self-discovery.

“I wrote it on Toronto Island, where I moved after my ex-wife and I split up,” said The Holy Gasp’s Benjamin Hackman. “I was real depressed at the time. And real lonely, too. Most days I couldn’t get out of bed. I’d lay there on stinked-up sheets, weeping, wishing for my old life back. I needed to write it out, laugh at myself, take the edge off.

“Divorce shocks the system, y’know. It makes you ask a whole lotta questions about how you’re gonna live your life and who you’re gonna be in your post-married world. You set out to build a future with someone, and when you call it quits on a marriage, you call it quits on that future too. So you gotta rewrite yourself entirely. Sebastian [Shinwell] was real supportive. He just kept saying, ‘Write it out… make it as big as you need to… I’ll figure out how to arrange it.’ And he did. He found a way to get a big ol’ chambre ensemble to play punk, which is pretty funny if you think about it–in a Bugs-Bunny-in-tails kinda way.”

The Holy Gasp On Tour:

Nov | 14 Sherbrooke, QC – Bar Le Magog
Nov | 15 Moncton, NB – Plan B
Nov | 16 Halifax, NS – The Seahorse Tavern
Nov | 17 St. John, NB – Pepper’s Pub
Nov | 23 Quebec City, QC –Le Cercle
Nov | 24 Trois Rivieres, QC – Zenob
Nov | 30 Ottawa, ON – House of Targ
Dec | 02 Toronto, ON – The Smiling Buddha
Dec | 07 Peterborough, ON – Catalina’s
Dec | 08 Hamilton, ON – Mills Hardware
Dec |09 Windsor, ON – Phog Lounge


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