Once upon a time in Paint

Scan021 Paint setlist

Once upon a time a long, long time ago – [postscript: from February 15, 2011]

Thought I would add some early notes from a Paint show. Not sure when this was. It was a good time nonetheless with this rendition of the sound.

Paint has gone through lots of revelations since, and is barreling ahead with a slew of shows comprising a month of Tuesdays this month of October 2013 at C’est What. Paint have been their own openers playing at 9:30 p.m. and then mingling with the crowd in an effort to chat and get to know each other early on. Spicing up and adding a laugh to the night has been a line-up of comedians taking a five minute turn on the stage. You never know what the world finds funny or sardonic. Getting to see Jenna Strautman doing double duty last Tuesday and getting double pay performing with her two bands of the moment Rotary Dial and that band Paint in both she plays bass with more prominent vocals and flute and presence in Rotary Dial.

At the moment, Paint are putting up a hell of a fight and making their presence more known to the world – a visual project on the go and new songs on the fly for the next ep.

From their website at http://www.paintband.com

Starting today, Paint has begun an IndieGogo campaign to raise funds for the following endeavours:

* The production and recording of Paint’s next EP (!);

* The production of a black-and-white narrative film to accompany the EP;

* Completion of the Capsulated DVD compilation of all 10 music videos from Where We Are Today plus bonus videos from Can You Hear Me? and special features; and

* Completion of the “Boomerang” music video, which is currently in post-production

Paint are the masters of hope: “Despite the seemingly equal platform of the internet, this is truly the most difficult time in history to be a musician. The market is so oversaturated with bedroom demos and this can discourage, overwhelm, and simply confuse audiences to the point of just tuning out. We’re just grateful that people keep coming back to see our shows. We’re varying our setlists and giving something different each time we walk on stage, as well as respecting our audience and their intelligence more than most “pop” acts do by challenging them with music that has some social and intellectual content, and inviting them be part of the experience of telling the band’s story. I think that’s why we’re going to survive.”

So what else can we say for the here and now: where we are today is help support the hardest working bunch of musictypes in this city and all manner of good things will boomerang back at you.




The Incomplete Enigma

The following is strictly an op-ed piece. There is no correlation to reality or fiction.

This is a story about rock and roll in the making or what we call The Incomplete Enigma.

Based upon a lifetime of experience in candid and casual conversations, it can be observed he is a man dressed in black on stage not because of style but because it helps him to blend into the murky miasma that is the rock and roll stage. The band itself has gone through the transformations that bands inevitable go through, stemming from one’s aspirations or demands or callings in life.

Cultivating the persona means making less of him obvious to the masses. It is the characterizaton on stage that cultivates the band, not the band. It is the observer that defines the idiom, the man in the band only delivers the package in little drips and lets the audience brew the rest. The man on stage is not the illusionist trying to fool the crowd. There is no disguising the myriads of influence of style and styles. Watch that man on the floorboards, watch him jump. It is of the moment. Playing the game, pah! They set their own rules and travel their route they set in their own packed car. Ambition is a pressure filled jam in a jar. Art is in eye of the poseur or the poster.  Whether it is the era of Bauhaus or the animated the poster beckons the observer to see the artist in front of the screen behind the paper and on the stage. The show must go on. The band travels in circles cultivating estimable colleagues and guests who become future cohorts for a night or even more, creating allies.  Delving down dark roads. Prophetically taking a path less chosen.

So why is this called the incomplete enigma. He is completely disingenuous when he says record labels do not matter.  Decrying injustice to others while his own wine cupboard goes barren,. Defying authoritarianism in a world meant to be democratic or compassionate. That thee path of independents and independence. goes out to the smatterings of the pseudo independents is of little significance. Staying true to the path no matter how long and winding. Lyrics drip with irony or self-evidential discovery and a touch of the positive. Effect change, change the world. The persona, with the person is no contrivance, it is the real deal. And that is the why of the Incomplete Enigma.

The show must go on.

Who? Where? C’est What? When? Why?



PAINT @ NXNE 2013, a set on Flickr.

NXNE 2013
10 P.M.
SUNDAY, JUNE 16, 2013

Another NXNE comes and goes.

Paint comes to the forefront at Magpie on a Sunday night to close the proceedings for another year.

The show at the Magpie reveals some new stellar changes to the band, including brand new bassist Jenna Strautman [from Dreadful Starlings] at her first NXNE. Talking about burying the lead. It was hot and sticky and rock and roll in the steambath that was the Magpie, [which was a bit of a shock given the coolness of the night air outside]. Certain old songs from the Paint repertoire emerged again from Can You Hear Me such as its lead track Don’t Blow Me Away, Strangers and the video song Madonna… To begin anew with new mates, sometimes you have to start at the beginning and relearn or learn the songs in the portfolio with a fresh ear. Through the transition that has been Paint it has been a pleasure and puzzle to see and meet the various new members of the band and guests along the way. The lead singer still needs a haircut. Where We Are Today is almost Where We Are yesterday as additional tunes comes in the perpetually changing repertoire. The band that wants to change the world. That is Paint. With a female bass player. There is a rock god out there.

Where we are today – Paint @ C’est What – November 6, 2012


Well, well, well. Who would have thought Paint had moves like Jagger?

With a swing of the hips on guitar and a bit of swagger in the boots Paint launched into their month of November residency at C’est What down there on 66 Front Street (at Front and Church not too far away from King Station on the TTC).

A hop down the stairs (but be careful because there are stairs) and a step to the left and it looked like a full dinner crowd in the space. C’est What and Paint have become a notable pairing, what more could one ask for with C’est What beer and dining while one watches the hardest working band in Canada always on the go, looking to make another mark with its breadth of embracing songs from its discography.

A prior residency of Paint at the intimate C’est What led to the high profile court case involving the band and the support of the club over the postering charges laid down by the law. And now Paint were back with its unique selection of entertainment: an opening band from Paint’s select list of band friends, and a comedian to help warm up the evening and provide in between set crowd amusement (because as one knows, Paint are not gifted joke tellers).

Receiving or snarking the setlist from Paint at the end of the night was over has been a tiny (and appreciated) ritual. The list for the night revealed three new tunes (two of them being Bonvire of Vanities and Shattered Hearts) immersed amongst the crowd favourites found on their two CDs to date. Some of the background trouble and turmoil in the Paint scene has provided the fuel for song creation. The sound of Paint is always in flux as is the roster of musicians who show up on stage depending on the circumstance of the moment. The echo of ring and chime and metronomic syndrum and keys slides sidewise into a mesh of sproing and crunchy guitars. And one can never count on the standby songs sounding the same as mysterious introductions swirling in the dark finally lead to the moment of recognition. Paint must be secretly planning world domination with the grandiose stage show at Coachella or Reading Festival that lies just around the corner.

The atmosphere for the night was not just anticipation for seeing Paint in familiar surroundings, but the feeling of doom and tension stemming from the election results pouring from the televisions. Worry and gloom gave way to a whoop and celebration onstage by Paint as the results from Ohio projected into victory for the incumbent President. Indeed, it was just another manic Monday on a Thursday.

The evening was led off by Craig Fay, an affable comedian with a dry taste for contemporaneous storytelling that one had to think almost one beat too long to get the point. Then the laughter came.

The first time we saw Paint in a previous Mandy on guitar incarnation at C’est What was also the first time to see some ska-kicking poppy ladies called Mittenz who definitely knew how to rock out. Three degrees of Mittenz separation later Hayley Stark were the opening band for the Tuesday night. Hayley Stark have come a long way since a previous viewing at the benefit for Girls Rock Camp Mississauga where they were a gentle folksy foursome on the stage. Hayley Stark are not that band now with a plus of guitars rocking out and more laughter on stage refuting any prior sombre demeanour.

Another set with more laughter from the comedian Craig Fay, the subject of the ihatecraigfay.com site then through the electoral gloom and doom Paint emerged. New patter, new talk, new songs, new shattered strut.

However, you paint it, Paint is still the star of the night. And they may not realize is the constant travel on the road has led to an easy confidence and given them a bit of that hippy hippy shake on stage. And we did mention moves like Jagger [but not in shades of maroon].

Now She Leaves has a hidden irony, the Girl in the Frame has become unhinged but Home is still Home on a manic monday, and you may be strangers when we meet, but friends with a beer before you leave. Did we mention that a certain President won an election?

More to say, more new music to hear through November at C’est What every Tuesday. Stay tuned for the drama and new songs in the offering.

And don’t forget to visit paintband.com

DSC_8426, originally uploaded by Midnight Matinee 24.