The Niagara News is the community newspaper of Niagara College located in Welland and Niagara-on-the-Lake, Ontario, Canada. It is created and produced by the students of the Niagara College Journalism program.
If you like your rock ‘n’ roll with a little bit of grease mixed in, you’ll want to be at The Rex Hotel in Welland this Wednesday.
That’s the day Open Hand, from California, and Thousand Young, from Welland, play a joint CD-release show.
The two bands are touring southern Ontario until Nov. 13 in support of the new records, both of which are being released on Welland’s Blacktop Records.
“The whole tour just feels right,” says Ben Andress, the tour’s promoter. “[Open Hand] is a band I grew up listening to in high school.”
Open Hand’s The Mark of the Demon, a one-song, 10-minute-long EP, and Thousand Young’s Thousand Young, an eight-song full-length record, are available for streaming on Blacktop’s Bandcamp page (www.blacktoprecords.bandcamp.com). Both bands will be releasing their records on CD as well as cassette tape on Nov. 9, an unconventional move that fits with their attitude.
“I feel like there aren’t enough bands that are doing things to try to be different nowadays,” says Chris McKirdy, Thousand Young’s drummer.
For Open Hand, who have been playing since 1999, The Mark of the Demon marks the beginning of their working relationship with Andress and Blacktop Records. Drummer Ethan Novak says the EP is a good representation of the band.
The two bands, which had never met each other prior to the tour, are a good fit live, according to Thousand Young founder and singer Corey Hamilton.
“If you listen to us,” Hamilton says, “we sound very different, but we fit well together.”
Thousand Young has become known as grease rock in the local media.
“I didn’t get it,” Novak says, “but then I saw them play and it kind of made sense.”
“If anybody wants to know what grease rock is, they need to go to the show to find out.