The Day Dreamers @ Rosewood Pub & Restaurant – April 26th

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They had me at “lamb”.  At first, I found it odd that a concert would start at 7 PM, but when you think about the Montreal culture, we take happy hour and double it with our “cinq à sept’.  The invitation for the album launch was a proper 5 à 7, complete with hors d’oeuvres…such as lamb kabobs and salmon tartare.  The Rosewood was packed with people of all ages to celebrate this momentous occasion.

The Day Dreamers, were formed in 2013 by high school friends Ali Kouri (Vocals/Guitar) and Tiana Desiree (Vocals/Violin).  Now as far as instruments go, I’m not a big fan of the violin.  It can either be amazing, or horrible…there doesn’t seem to be any in between.  It did peak my curiosity, when I saw the request, so I listened to a few songs on their Sound Cloud Page.   It was enough to get me over there, along with a good friend to keep me company.  I asked the guy next to me how he knew of The Day Dreamers and he said he knew the bassist Max Page-Slowik, who came over and introduced himself.  This is when I found out that these are all friends getting together to launch this labour of love.  I could feel the nervous energy, a youthful energy as I spoke to Ali and Tiana.  This was a special night for this band, surrounded by family and friends.

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A little after 7 PM, Ali, Tiana and Max were joined by Cedric de Saint-Rome (Drums) and Stephanie Maier (Keyboards/Vocals) and started the show with “I’ll Say” the first song off their album.  They played the whole album in the order in which the songs appear on the CD.  It took them a few songs to really get into it, get those nerves under control, something that this young band will surely shake off pretty quickly with experience.  What I appreciated was that we were seeing some raw talent blossoming before us.  It’s no wonder they won the People’s Choice Award at the Beaconsfield Battle of the bands and Best Interpretation at the Hudson Music Festival.

I truly appreciated the structure of the songs, which showed a lot of musical dexterity.  This wasn’t high school pop, but serious indie sounds worthy of notice.  Songs like “Vacancy” show a lot of maturity, allowing the music to take you on a journey, soft and gentle at times with cascades of intensity.  The violin adds to the music, rather than distract.  I found myself being impressed with how well-crafted the songs were.

At the end of the evening, I had enjoyed myself.  I’ve been to the big shows, the popular sold-out shows, but it’s good to appreciate the blossoming talent within our own town.  At Montreal Rocks, we strive to highlight not only established behemoths of today’s music scene, but we support the local talent that simply want to be heard.

At the end of the evening, like an awards ceremony, they thanked all those involved in the project, including the former bassist that was in the crowd. It’s clear that the parents have wholeheartedly supported them, and as a father myself, I find it great that they can share in their kid’s success and support them as they embark on this journey.

Although they are young, I heard a maturity that can only get better with time.  I look forward to their next gig, especially if they serve the lamb kabobs again.

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Review & photos – Randal Wark

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