Tokyo’s Zoobombs dropping in on Oshawa

Courtesy of Zoobombs

Fans of rock and roll are in for a surprise this month, as Tokyo’s own Zoobombs are coming to town.

The Zoobombs, headed by Don Matsuo, formed in 1994, and have delivered their unique brand of music to the world ever since.

“The Zoobombs are one of the most amazing, fantastic, out-there rock and roll bands you’ll ever see,” says William McGuirk, sales coordinator at Star Metro Media, promoter, and all around fan of rock and roll music.

He describes their sound as a “Japanese fusion” of blues, funk, and R&B, which can be accessible to most fans of music. And as the band sings in Japanese, their performances truly are about the music, rather than the lyrics. “We are a big ball of energy,” said Matsuo via email. “We don’t play smooth and relaxing music.”

“The Zoobombs are one of the most amazing, fantastic, out-there rock and roll bands you’ll ever see,”

Their performance at Oshawa’s Moustache Club on April 19 marks the fourth occasion the band has come to Canada, previously performing at such venues as the Velvet Elvis, the Silver Dollar, and Johnny B’s, all in the Durham Region.

The Zoobombs, known for songs such as “Holic”, “Doo-Bee”, “Mo’ Funky”, and “Tighten Rap”, have seen numerous changes to their membership over their 23 years together. According to McGuirk, the band’s performances are centered around Matsuo, who engages with the audience, while the rest of the band focuses on “holding down the rhythm section.”

The band’s current tour in Canada follows the announcement of the Silver Dollar’s closing at the end of April. The venue, established in 1958, holds a special place in the band’s heart.

The trip from Tokyo is a long one, which is why the Zoobombs will perform everywhere from Hamilton to Guelph, with the Moustache Club being just one stop on their tour.

The Zoobomb’s return to Oshawa has earned the attention and support of several business owners and fans in the area, who are putting their efforts towards supporting the band.

Isabella’s Chocolate Cafe in downtown Oshawa is selling Zoobomb-inspired sugar cookies, while the Bon Bom company will sell Zoobomb-inspired bath bombs at the Robert McLaughlin Gallery’s First Fridays event on April 7.

According  to McGuirk, these displays of support were at the suggestion of the business owners themselves, simply out of a passion and love for the Zoobombs’ music.

“There is no other band, and I know a lot of bands, that delivers a show the way the Zoobombs do,”

While McGuirk describes the band’s music as “dirty, old school rock and roll, influenced heavily by the Rolling Stones and Jimi Hendrix,” their performances aren’t just for fans of that genre.

The event is shaping up to be a showcase of, as McGuirk puts it, “decent, dirty ‘Shwa rock.”The Zoobombs will be joined at the Moustache Club by fellow bands Tijuana Jesus and Blaster. He describes Tijuana Jesus’ music as an “old school kind of 90s skate trash punk,” while he says newcomers Blaster remain a bit of an enigma.

“There is no other band, and I know a lot of bands, that delivers a show the way the Zoobombs do,” says McGuirk.

Tickets for the show are available at www.ticketscene.ca/events/17472.

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