Never a Mundane Moment
DHI at The Rivoli in Toronto, Ontario, January 27, 1996
with Mundane and Ichor

by: Gino Filicetti
Once again, it was time to pay homage to the gods of the Toronto brutal musick scene, our very own Mundane. This being something like the tenth time that I would see these maniacs live, let me assure you that my excitement was present, and in full force.

As with all shows at the Rivoli, no matter how many people turn out, the venue seems packed to the teeth, my best guess would put the amount of people present at a maximum of two hundred; scarce no doubt to European standards, but for a Toronto show, it's about 180 more people than you'd expect to show up.

The first band to take the stage was Ichor, a band clouded in mystery of whom I had yet to hear a sampling of music. All I knew was that they were an industrial/ambient hybrid. As the band unfolded their first song, all that was present on stage was one man, two floor toms and a mic which was not used excessively. Then after about two minutes of background ambience and tribal beatings, a second man emerged to take hold of another set of two mid-toms. The tribal beating now doubled in intensity, but nothing else changed except the occasional highly distorted mumbling into the microphone. After about two songs, a third man took the stage, and began beating on what seemed to me at first as a pair of stage lights. They were in fact some kind of metal drum set that gave off a very annoying, shrill metallic sound. This man seemed to be the jack of all trades in the band, for as the beating of the drums continued endlessly, this man played the metal drums, took up bass guitar, tried his hand at the keys and even put his lips to a trumpet! Ichor's set was interesting to say the least, but I could not see them ever headlining a show and playing for more than thirty minutes.

Next to assault the masses was Mundane. As per usual I took up my spot of choice, front row centre, and got ready to receive an injection of pure insanity. The band started their set with a song taken from their stash of new material (which has not yet been released, goddamnit!) and I could safely say gave the crowd, composed mainly of industrial and gothic types, a shock and a half. Next came an old classic from their debut album, _Seed_, entitled "Killing for Forgiveness". Their set continued for approximately half an hour, with the energy level only becoming stronger and stronger. My particular favorites this time around were the classic "What's Left?" and their newest 'hit,' "Drowning In The Mainstream". Sound-wise, this was probably the best I've seen Mundane, although according to drummer Scott, "This was our lazy show." One peeve I had was with Vitor's (vocals/percussion) decision to keep the lights on him at a minimum, denying people in the far recesses of the venue from witnessing his unique stage presence.

Finally the time came for the band that most of the venue, excluding myself, came to see: DHI (ie: Death and Horror Inc.) For me, the jewel of the night had come and gone, but nevertheless, I've been interested in catching DHI live since hearing their album _Pressures Collide_. Before the set, the stage was jacked up to the max. A plethora of lights were installed, smoke machines readied and finally, the time came for the band to take its place. Although Adrian complained about DHI's similarities to NIN, I being the NIN ignorant person that I am, thought their sound was particularily heavy and experimental in the same breath. The one aspect of this band that I thoroughly enjoyed was their use of an electric violin, played by a stunning female goth. The violin created the most amazing atmosphere that is impossible to relate in words; suffice it to say that the sounds evoked from the violin gave me chills that echoed right to the soul.

Although circumstances prevented my staying for the entire DHI set, I would definitely see them again. In fact, this show probably ranks up there as one of my favorite small venue concerts in a long time.

(article submitted 14/3/1996)


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