Tokyo Police Club at Petit Campus, April 19 2019

Alternative indie band Tokyo Police Club consists of vocalist and bassist David Monks, keyboardist Graham Wright, guitarist Josh Hook, and drummer Greg Alsop. Since they formed back 2005, the indie band from Newmarket, Ontario, has released four studio albums, six if you count the EP compilations like the band do. This current tour is in support of their newest album TPC, aptly named as after chasing a more radio friendly indie pop sound on their 2014 album Forcefield, it is return to their roots. Rob Schnapf, who worked on Champ (2010) returned to produce the album. On the band’s website they simply describe that “TPC is a rock record with tons of guitars” and that couldn't be more true.


The night at the Petit Campus starts off to a pretty full house around 8pm. Dizzy, having won this years Juno award for Alternative Album of the Year, are captivating the audience with their emotional ballads. The suburban indie pop band, lead by Katie Munshaw, play a fantastic 30 minute set. While their chill tunes have the audience swaying along, upon mentioning Tokyo Police Club the crowd erupts and you can feel excitement in the room already. Katie isn’t afraid to share her stories with the Montreal crowd either, talking about her big breakup and inviting the crowd to put up their “little middle fingers” and that “this song [Joshua] goes out to all the Josh’s out there”. They clean up and by now the room was packed, and people were excited for TPC to make their appearance.


By 9:10 the lights dimmed. The back curtain was mostly covered by road cases with the band’s many amps piled on top, no extra decor decor but they don’t  need it. The revealed drum set, covered with a “Don’t let them f*ck with your Heart” decal, lay in wait. The boys ran out and immediately jump into the first  track of TPC, New Blues. As Monks sang he invited to crowd to get closer and push forward. Both Wright and Hook jumped around on guitar, the band was not lying, this rock album features a lot of guitars. They are not shy to use the whole stage and get the crowd into it, stepping in front of their monitors to solo in turn. A quick “Hey!! Montreal!!” and they are into their next songs, back to back hits from Champ. The crowd loudly singing along to “Boots of Danger”, then Hook gets the crowd clapping along to Favourite Colour.


It’s back to TPC after that, other than a small interlude of their live-only instrumental track Zap! they make it through four new hits: “Hercules”, “Simple Dude”, “Outtatime”, and “Pigs”. The rock focus is really clear, but translates really well live. The LA vibes in Pigs’ guitar riff and the cowbell in “Hercules”, gives this a really fun college vibe, reminiscent of 2000s Frat Rock, with influences from Weezer to Vampire Weekend.  Wright even told Billboard, “Hercules is a special one because it sounds like how making this record felt to me…When [guitarist Josh Hook] and I were in the live room recording the guitars, it felt like a party the whole time. So I’m really happy that the sound of that party gets to be audible to everyone...", and a party it was, the crowd was jumping around and dancing almost the whole time.

It was not just the crowd enjoying themselves. Big smiles and laughs adorned the band as they bumped into each other, tossed the tambourine around, and even accidentally turned off another member's amp when putting down their whiskey. They did not hold back, each member had a designated towel because they knew they would be getting sweaty on stage. Monks emptied his water bottle all over himself, to cheers from the crowd of course. He was not afraid to show off his silly dance moves either between songs, earning quite a few laughs from the crowd, and even went on a tangent miming his morning routine. They rounded off their set with a few more songs from Champ, along with a couple highlights from all their other albums and EPs. Hearing the gritty bass-heavy “Nature Of The Experiment” was a nice surprise and change of pace. The band then stepped offstage, waiting to see if we’d stick around, and came back to end the show with the energetic “Cheer it On” and “Your English is Good”. They went all out leaving the mics and keys all fallen over on the ground by the end of the last solo. A memorable and exciting show that i can imagine much of the audience will be talking about this week.