Ironic/homoerotic Scandinavian tribute act hard to resist 

The way he’s talking, Vancouver punk rock musician Jono Jak sounds like he’s in addiction therapy.


Who: Denim Demons

What: The Punk Night Halloween

Where: Boot Pub

When: Sunday, Oct. 31

He swears that this is the last time he’s going to do it.

But that was what he said the last time he did it.

He thinks he should stop but it’s simply way too much fun.

None of the usual suspect rock ’n’ roll vices apply here. Instead, what Jono is referring to is impersonating one of the world’s most bizarre underground bands – Norway’s Turbonegro, a hard rockin’, hard livin’ troupe outfitted in makeup, fetish caps and rough trade denim.

Imagine the rebel punk rock offspring of rockers KISS, Queen and Judas Priest front man Rob Halford, raised in the Blue Oyster bar from the Police Academy movies.

They are, laughs Jono, "a bunch of weirdos."

Turbonegro is nowhere near the mainstream but they do possess a dedicated world-wide following and these days any true Scandinavian metal fan that’s worth his/her salt has at least heard of them.

A couple of years ago the band was a lot more obscure. Jono and the rest of his crew in The Excessives had discovered Turbonegro while touring in Europe and couldn’t get enough of the outlandish rockers whose style choices many interpret as a blatant middle finger to macho rock star posturing.

When Halloween rolled around Jono and fellow Excessive Trevor Shad recruited three more members from bands The Real McKenzies and The Gung Ho’s and staged a tribute to Turbonegro they called Denim Demons.

But the band was still little known on the Vancouver scene and few knew what band Denim Demons were imitating. Says Jono, Denim Demons spent the night deflecting compliments from audience members who had never seen anything like them before.

They were a big hit and it was tempting to keep it up, but when they heard the real thing might be touring the area last year they made up their minds to cease performing.

In October, 2003, Turbonegro made it as far as Seattle, but never performed in Vancouver.

Jono says he’s doubtful now they ever will, and because of that Denim Demons have broken their promise.

For the third consecutive Halloween, Denim Demons are letting their inner Turbonegro shine through. This time around they’ll be in Whistler, performing for a special Halloween edition of The Punk Night. If there exists a better way for Whistler’s hardcore to celebrate Halloween than with ironically homoerotic Scandinavian impostors, I’d like to hear it.

Punk Night regulars Savanah and locals The Antithesis are also on the bill that night. The show is The Antithesis’s last ever so the night promises to be sentimental – with a definite emphasis on "mental."

The Boot is going for two Halloweens this year, hosting Slow Nerve Action’s Pornoween party on Saturday, Oct. 30.

For more information on shows at the Boot call 604-932-3338.

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