You may have heard of the Will Hunter Band before, but you’re not likely to hear that name again.
After completing their southern Ontario winter tour last month, the Kingston-based, indie pop rock five-piece returned for their “BIG ANNOUNCEMENT SHOW” at The Grad Club on Friday night.
But before the band took the stage to make their announcement, fellow locals Lost Cousins opened with a focused set.
With a dedicated fan base within the university, band members Cameron Duffin (drums), Dylan Cantlon-Hay (bass), Murray Spencer (guitar), Thomas Dashney (keyboards) and Lloyd McArton (guitar/saxophone) stood out for their eclectic brand of indie rock.
Lost Cousins reprised familiar songs like “Elegy”; with its haunting guitar line that breaks into the poignant countdown of the bass, the song seems to settle on your shoulder in a soft reminder of inevitability.
Fleshing out their songs with layered vocal harmonies, Lost Cousins stretches their melodies with beautiful — though lengthy — solo sections, as in “Strange Dreams”.
They ended their set with McArton’s smooth, melancholic tenor sax leaving a lingering note of anticipation for the appearance of Will Hunter Band.
After taking the stage, Hunter casually announced the band’s decisions to change their name to “Kasador”.
The band — Will Hunter (vocals/guitar), Don ‘Pineapple’ (drums), Cam Wyatt (guitar), Boris Baker (bass) and Colin Simonds (piano/synth) — then opened with the bright, laughing guitar line after the evocative tune “What We Used To Say”.
Referencing the Spanish word for “hunter” —“cazador” — the new name honours the band’s origins while reflecting that the band is comprised of more than just Will Hunter.
The camaraderie was evident during the show, with Baker bouncing around the stage, playing up his familiarity with Hunter, Wyatt and Simonds at different intervals.
The set interspersed newer material and covers with songs off of their aptly named EP Last Summer, showcasing the band’s distinctive energy.
With melodies tasting of nostalgia, songs like “Young and Hopeless” and “Reckless” kept heads bobbing, and the clever rhythmic additions of drummer Don Pineapple keeps “Ghosts” in your head long after the show.
The audience hung on Hunter’s every word, thrilling and singing along when the band covered Drake’s “Hold On, We’re Going Home” and falling quiet when the band played new song “Night Like Tonight”.
Though their name has changed and songs like “Night Like Tonight” reveal a moodier, more introspective tone and maturing sound — feeling like a cool hand on familiar aches — Kasador continues to deliver, as ever, a thoughtful, energized performance to keep your feet moving.
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