Born Ruffians play a nostalgic show at Hillside Inside

Wednesday, February 6, 2013

  • Born Ruffians lead, Luke Lalonde, at Hillside Inside.

    Born Ruffians lead, Luke Lalonde, at Hillside Inside.

  • Born Ruffians rockin' it at Hillside. Photo: Katrina Victoria

    Born Ruffians rockin' it at Hillside. Photo: Katrina Victoria

Written by Abigel Lemak

This year’s Hillside Inside featured the Born Ruffians from Midland, ON, playing at the unexpectedly cozy venue of Mitchell Hall. The show was sold out, yet not overly packed, with eager fans pressed together at the front of the stage and the casual Planet Bean drinkers at the back. 

Despite missing their guitar/keyboardist Andy Lloyd --having broken his arm roller-skating the day before-- the show was pretty hopping and especially enjoyed by those who preferred their 2008 album, Red, Yellow & Blue. The crowd was washed over in sweet nostalgia as they picked through old favourites. There was a general expression of “life’s pretty all right” planted on peoples faces, or maybe it was the incredible relief of being indoors after waiting in the blistering cold.

There seemed to be as many photographers at the show as there were fans, scouring the area for that money making shot. Everyone looked to be having a great time, myself and the swarm of photographers included; taking moments to sway to lead guitar/vocalist Luke Lalonde’s sleepy croon, effortlessly backed by bassist Mitch Derosier and drummer Steven Hamelin. 

Born Ruffians are characterized by their peppy sound, quirky lyrics and enthusiastic guitar. The band members themselves offered their own flamboyance in character as they jointly mocked the recklessness of their missing band member and his “goddamn broken arm,” with added pipe-ins from Derosier like, “--and Fuck Andy for breaking his arm,” for good measure. Although the final band member was missed, their set did not suffer from his a bsence. 

The charisma of band members seemed to effect the audience, as a young lady from the crowd sighed to her friend, “I totally have his number.” Staring pointedly at Lalonde, in all his sweaty, haughty glory. 

Six-dollar beers in-hand, the crowd bounced to favourites like “Foxes Mate for Life,” ending the night with their hit song “I Need a Life.” The show seemed to leave people happy and content as they headed to indulge in some delicious vegan options, or pop out for a chance to breath in that sweet, sweet cannabis filled air. Hillside has come to grow a reputation for bringing in great bands and organizing great concert events. However, with such wonderful prestige come expensive ticket prices, between 20 to 22 dollars a pop. The show was definitely enjoyable and I was particularly impressed with the ease in which the Born Ruffians managed to pull such a great, last-minute show together. Kudos. 

For more information on Hillside events click here.

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