Will Currie & the Country French at Wilf’s (Nov. 13)

This past Saturday night, Wilf’s played host to some great talent, showcasing music from Jean-Paul Maurice and Laurier graduates Will Currie and the Country French.

Maurice took to the stage first for an acoustic performance. Maurice’s acoustic pop-rock sound filled the room and displayed his impressive vocals and whistling. His alluring ballads manage to tell stories by mixing humour and heartbreak and are evidently rooted in the landscapes of Western Canada.

Maurice played a mix of songs from his band’s full album Young People with Faces and their latest EP Big Country. The song “Spoons” from the EP showed off Maurice’s gentle voice and delivered a soft opening for the rest of the night’s music. When he was joined by a backing band on stage, they provided a harder sound that was able to cut through the reluctant crowd and get everyone engaged.

The Cord caught up with Maurice after his set and asked him about playing on Laurier’s campus. “It’s great here, they treat the bands really well, only bad thing was the grumpy sound guy, he’s not very nice,” he commented. Maurice continued, “I was hoping the crowd would be a little more interactive since I’m used to a high-energy crowd.”

Maurice is currently on tour with Will Currie and the Country French without the rest of his band — aptly called Maurice. “I flew out solo and it’s lonely touring without the band. Touring is a lengthy process, but I’ll be meeting up with the rest of my band when we begin to drive out West,” he concluded.

After Maurice’s set, Will Currie and the Country French brought their high-energy rock music to the Wilf’s stage. The catchy hooks and upbeat drumming had people tapping their toes and dancing on the spot. The band played tracks like “Tommy Douglas” and “Thunder Bay Coast Guard Radio”, the latter a dynamic song with interesting musical changes and neat guitar effects.

Delving into some new material the band also played “Railroad”, another lively song with a fun melody that had the crowd clapping to the beat. Despite the quiet crowd, Will Currie and the Country French delivered an admirable performance, eventually winning over much of the crowd with their classic indie-pop sound.

The night was capped off with an impromptu cover of “Hey Jude” for the encore, featuring Jean-Paul Maurice on vocals.

Will Currie spoke to The Cord about the show and said, “It was lots of fun. Sometimes when you play your hometown you will have your friends come out and see you but not this time. That’s why it’s great on nights like these when you have people who come out to see you that just want to sing and dance.”

Currie also divulged an update about the band’s next record Awake! You Sleepers, saying, “We are all done the album, but we’re in the works trying to find a distributor. We hope that will be taken care of early in the New Year.”