ROSSLAND — The excitement leading up to The Pack AD’s show at the Flying Steamshovel on Friday night was palpable — and a lot of it was coming from the opening act.
The Pack AD was originally scheduled to play the Shovel on Friday, Jan. 12, but had to reschedule when the band’s plane wasn’t able to land. The intended opening act, Nelson’s Immune 2 Cobras, ended up playing two sets instead, and The Pack AD needed a new opener for the 19th.
Saint Mountain’s Eli Bukowski got the call on Tuesday, Jan. 16 while on his way to the coast for what was supposed to be a week-long trip.
“I was driving out to the coast and I got to around Osoyoos … and I got a text from our buddy Quillan [Hanley from Heavy Airship] saying, ‘Do you guys want to open for The Pack AD?’ and at that point I was planning on a week trip, but I was like, ‘Alright,'” explained Bukowski.
Friday night’s show was the second time the Nelson band opened for The Pack AD.
The first time was when Becky Black and Maya Miller were kicking off their Dollhouse tour in Nelson at the beginning of October.
That time Saint Mountain had even less notice.
“That day we had four hours’ notice,” said Bukowski.
Saint Mountain’s bass player, Tyler James, also had pneumonia at the time, but Bukowski, guitar player and front man, and drummer Bryce Harrison planned to go ahead anyway.
“Bryce and I were considering doing it as a two-piece because Tyler was bed-ridden and then we pulled Tyler,” said Bukowski.
“It wasn’t that hard,” said James.
“No, that was a career high for us, opening for The Pack AD the first time,” said Bukowski. “We’d been trying to get the opening gig for the past, what? Two years?”
Obviously, the three bandmates are big fans of The Pack AD.
“I was given their second LP, We Kill Computers, by a family friend when I was like … 13 and I’ve been a huge fan ever since,” said Bukowski.
“And they play in the area all the time,” said James. “We’ve had a million opportunities to see them.”
Saint Mountain is hoping to organize a tour this year and has an EP out called St. Mtn.
Those who attended Friday night’s show had a chance to hear the band’s blend of indie rock and punk, including Black and Miller, who watched Saint Mountain’s set.
As Bukowski, James and Harrison were tearing down, Miller even came up to James to say, “That was awesome by the way.”
The three then stuck around for The Pack AD’s set and they clearly weren’t the only ones who were big fans.
Black and Miller exchanged banter with the crowd like they were talking to old friends and everyone crowded onto the dance floor for some energetic thrashing.
The Pack AD played not only songs from their new album Dollhouse, but also old favourites and the crowd responded by calling for “10 more songs” as an encore.
Black and Miller came back for three more and Saint Mountain’s three members were among those who crowded around the stage to listen.