Two of The Smiths in town to DJ anniversary

In their 1986 new wave hit Panic, the Smiths sang, “Hang the DJ, Hang the DJ, Hang the DJ.” Hopefully no one will be chanting those lines when two of the cult band’s ex-members spin records in Montreal next week.

For the first time since the “Queen is Dead Tour” in 1986, The Smith’s rhythm section, bassist Andy Rourke and drummer Mike Joyce are returning to la belle province to play the records which influenced them as teenagers, and those which in turn have been inspired by “the songs that saved your life,” the musicians said about their 15 date tour.

The Ex-Smiths will join local DJs Radiowhore & Amyl Nitrate at O Patro Vys on Mont-Royal next Monday to mark the fifth anniversary of Montreal’s PVC Productions.

PVC began with an alternative club night in 1999, at the old Cybertek Club on St-Laurent Blvd. DJ Amyl Nitrate (The Mirror’s Lorraine Carpenter) and DJ Radiowhore (Daniel Bernard) started spinning together and organizing their own jam nights as an alternative to the city’s music scene. The duo got a regular gig and started playing mod, glam, Britpop, new wave, and electropop tunes. PVC, by the way, stands for poly vinyl chloride: what records are made of.

For those unfamiliar with The Smiths, here’s a brief history. The legendary U.K. band was formed in 1982 as a foursome with frontman Morrissey, guitarist Johnny Marr and Rourke and Joyce on bass and drums. They had a few chart-topping hits in Europe and North America, but were never considered mainstream. Despite their growing popularity, the group split up in 1987 with eight albums to their name.

After the split, Morrissey embarked on an inconstant solo career; Marr performed as a sideman with different bands including, The The and Electronic with New Order’s Bernard Summer and backing vocals from the Pet Shop Boys’ Neil Tennant; Rourke played with Sinead O’Connor; and Joyce joined the Buzzcocks in 1991.

Since then, Joyce and Rourke continued working together from time to time, joining Manchester-based band Specter and The Dogs with ex-Oasis guitarist Paul “Bonehead” Arthurs, as well as DJing on both sides of the Atlantic.

The duo is also currently involved in a new project with British singer-songwriter Vinny Peculiar, with rumours of festivals in Europe this summer.


Catch Joyce, Rourke of The Smiths and DJs Radiowhore & Amyl Nitrate at O Patro Vys, 356 Mt-Royal E. Monday, March 15 at 9 p.m. Entry: 8$ at door.


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