Down With Webster revisits Laurier with energetic show at the Turret

(Photo by Jody Waardenburg)
(Photo by Jody Waardenburg)

It was Orientation Week in 2010 when I first attended one of the many Down With Webster concerts that have taken place at Wilfrid Laurier University over the course of their career.

It was in a crowd of assorted first years, full of eager energy that erupted into a Laurier chant and cut the band off-mid song. They reacted by playing along for one glorious moment before continuing on with the show. I had never felt more welcome, and that’s precisely what Down With Webster aims to achieve with their live performances.

“[It’s] an all-inclusive, fun vibe, I think because we are a bunch of different personalities,” said lead guitarist Pat Gillett.

“When people see us all up on stage, guys with different styles, different dress codes, and we’re all having fun together like we do every night, it makes everyone in the audience feel like they can … just come out and have a good time.”

Martin Seja, known to fans as Bucky, said that their eclectic personas not only dictate the kind of shows they put on, but the music they produce.

“That’s what makes our sound so definitive from anything else,” he said. “It’s the fact that we’re all so different. When you put us together, no matter what it ends up being, it has that essence to it.”
Down With Webster is known for overlapping genres in their music, resulting in what can only be defined as pop.

“I call it iPod music, it’s everything you have on your iPod mixed into one,” said Bucky.

This could be attributed to their habitually collaborative efforts during the music making process which they’ve been recently very preoccupied with. The band’s new album, called Party For Your Life after their most recent single, was scheduled to be released in October, but has been pushed back to January.

“We went back and listened to it and there were a few songs we basically just wanted to redo,” said Gillett. “We’re hard on ourselves.”

Down With Webster has so far spent the last month completely revising two songs from the original album and developing two new songs that might take the place of others. Gillett extended his apologies to fans during an interview with The Cord.

“Sorry we took the extra month but I really think it’s worth it, this thing is going to hopefully live forever.”

The band, however, offered the audience at Turret Nightclub on Tuesday November 5 a small taste of what they are missing with a couple of new songs and a lot of favourites.

The whole show had the ground shaking while students brought their hands in a W shape up and down with the beat. Down with Webster was inclusive as always, encouraging backs of hands to go up in rhythm with “The Back Of My Hand” and making the audience repeat the chorus during “Gon’ Do It.”

Back in early spring, the Wilfrid Laurier University Students’ Union held a contest that gave bands the opportunity to compete to win a chance to open for Down With Webster. Students were invited to submit music online and have their friends vote. The bands with the most votes moved on to be appraised by a panel of judges and in August, The Bends were told they had won.

“We’re just really excited,” said senior director of marketing at CIBC, Massimo Noce. “I mean this is a fun event, it feels like everybody’s having a good time and we think it’s extremely rewarding for a band like The Bends, kudos to them.”

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