Gay Nineties show home-town crowd lots of love

Local rockers-of-extravagance played a free show at Venue in appreciation of their Vancouver fans.

Gay Nineties on stage at Venue Nightclub
Bright lights on a Thursday night.

Not only is Café Crepe famous for its $13 beer pitchers, but it also hosted the first sight of local band, Gay Nineties, before their free concert last Thursday. Lead singer and guitarist Parker Bossley leaned over the patio railing to chat with Dan Moxon of Bend Sinister before making his way across the street and under 102.7 The PEAK’s tent for some vogue shots with the band.

First to take the stage was bushy-bearded Moxon, who continued to wet his palate behind a keyboard. He entertained the early crowd with his characteristic piano rock, with bassist Matt Rhode (Bend Sinister) and drummer Malcolm Holt (Gay Nineties) eventually joining him. Moxon exhibited merriness through numbers like “Afraid of the World,” an A-major honky-tonk full of found-at-home happiness.

Dan Moxon and Matt Rhode of Bend Sinister

Dan Moxon and Matt Rhode of Bend Sinister.

Local “widescreen indie rock” band Oceanographers followed. They have some captivating music videos under their belt; regrettably, their live show waned. Strained vocals from singer Clayton Dupuis were at times wince-worthy. Combined with James Ediger’s dispassionate guitar work, their soporific set reminded audience members of their looming weeknight bedtimes.

Gay Nineties gained traction in Vancouver after making the Top 20 in 2012’s Peak Performance Project. After a quiet couple of years—for the band, not its members—Gay Nineties recently released their Liberal Guilt EP and are spending the month of May touring across Canada.

Gay Nineties get a lot love from Vancouver: Their exuberant single "Letterman" has been spinning consistently on The PEAK’s radio waves, due in no small part to its distinguishable local sound. That's hardly a coincidence since frontman Bossley has played in several prominent B.C. bands including Hot Hot Heat, The Mounties, and Fake Shark – Real Zombie.

Halfway through their showy set, Bossley—whose hippie headband held back only some of the sweat trickling past his shimmery eye-shadow—raised his petite glass of red wine to make a toast: “We’re so happy to be starting our tour in Vancouver . . . I’d like to make a toast to our home town.”

Parker Bossley singing

"And culture breeds contempt in the modern world."

Bossley’s humble banter contrasted well with Gay Nineties' glaring light show and loud, lavish rock performance: “Do you guys remember high school? That was kinda of f*cked up,” he said, before the band warmed the room with the hip-motivating Latin grooves of "Good Times."

The concert came to an end as the band thanked the crowd for “giving us the best year of our lives.” Friends and fans whooped, cheered and applauded. And from the back of the club, a proud Steve Bays (Hot Hot Heat, Mounties) looked on with what one would swear was a twinkle in his eye.

Gay Nineties side-stage

"We made a pact / To separate ourselves from the pack"

Watch Gay Nineties's "Letterman" video:

All photography by Alistair Mellen

Tweeting about your local music scene: @thatlaba

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