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Getting loud with Shout Out Out Out Out

by admin October 27, 2009

Shout Out Out Out Out always kick off a raging dance party, and with the first words out of front-man Nik Kozub’s mouth at Il Motore last Saturday night, he proved they haven’t missed a beat:
“Everyone needs to squeeze in down here, this is where the show is!”
There was a noticeable lack of equipment on stage for the two opening bands since Shout Out’s didn’t go through the obligatory sound check. They set up just before their set, rushed only by the impending metro closing time. It’s a fly by the seat of your pants attitude few bands can get away with, but they pull it off.
The style of the first opener, Femme, cannot be ascertained from their MySpace page. Nothing is similar to their current sound. The four-piece, self-described as a “hot swag punk R&B disco” project, has been three years in the making, mixing and switching band members in search of “the perfect sound,” drummer Julian Slash explained.
The second band, TMDP, are two DJs, who spin out electro-groove in a style not unlike Junior Boys. They immediately shrouded the origins of the band in mystery by admitting that their real band name is not something they want people to know.
“You have to dig,” insisted Jeffrey Addison. “We plant the seed. You gotta water it, nurture it, let it grow. We’re not going to tell you.”
They did, however admit that the acronym stands for the original name, which they didn’t like after playing their first show.
Naming is not a skill they wield well, nor like to do, so it bodes well for them that their songs are primarily instrumental, with the odd vocal loop. Song names are taken from sci-fi novels and dirty baselines are plentiful.
For both opening sets, the crowd participation could be described as active listening at best, with a small sprawl of dancers in the front. This expanded ten-fold when Shout Out Out Out Out took the stage. The six members are divided into two sections: rhythm and bass.
The melody is created by the robotic sound from any of Kozub’s three vocoders. The lyrics, in contrast to the hype beats, are dark and self-loathing, but who’s going to listen to lyrics when there’s high-kicking to be done?
“I stretch a tiny little bit before shows,” Kozub admitted, adding that even he never believes photos of especially audacious kicks he’s managed to pull off. Shout Out Out Out Out shows get so physical, a fan once broke his knee.
“Although we might not be winning them all over, at least the ones we win over are willing to come back after we pummel them,” laughed Will Zimmerman.
Mid-set, Shout Out’s invited a good friend of theirs, Rollie Pemberton, onstage. Pemberton, also known as Cadence Weapon, has recently moved to Montreal from Shout Out’s shared hometown of Edmonton. He’s worked with them before, collaborating on “Coming Home,” featured on their most recent album, Reintegration Time. The song they played, however, had not been worked on in collaboration. In fact, it hadn’t even been rehearsed together.
“It may be a disaster,” cautioned Kozub. “But you don’t care, right?”
After only two verses, it quickly took a turn for the worse. Pemberton began repeating a party anthem rhyme about doing acid before finally resorting to the classic Shout-Out chant of “Shout! Out-out! Out-out!” The song’s lack of success was written on Kozub’s face as he communicated its progressing failure to the other members through most of the ill-fated performance.
If the rest of the set wasn’t redeeming enough, Shout Out’s elevated the dance party to the next level during the encore. They find that most cities are predictable in how engaged the audience will be, but Montreal is always hit or miss. This show was a pleasant surprise when the crowd finally lost it for “Chicken Soup For the Fuck You,” the second encore song, and the appearance of the well-brandished cowbell.