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Down With Webster, the UofG Favourite

Tuesday, September 9, 2014

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Written by Jaimee-Lisa Cotter

Among the onslaught of entertainment that happens during Guelph’s frosh every year, in the recent tradition of the O-Week Concert, Toronto-based band, Down With Webster returned to Guelph for the third time in five years.

“We love coming back here. Guelph just has so much hype. We used to come up here when our friends were in school, it’s a fun place to be” Camm Hunter, rap vocalist and on stage hype man, said in a post-show interview that their affinity for Guelph grows with every returning show. This is unsurprising, given the amount of people in the crowd who sang every word of every song and the amount of energy the six members of the band were able to pump into the crowd.

Diversity seems to be the theme for this year’s O-Week, and the CSA sponsored event delivered with every intention of carrying it on. Rich Aucoin, who opened the show this year, had every trick you could imagine. Featuring multimedia presentations during each song, Aucoin opened his set with a well-researched message for these first year Gryphons, hyping the crowd with a building anticipation in his music, minimal lighting, and broadcasting phrases such as “Paint the cannon”, “Gryphons unite”, “Meet the person next to you”, “Make the most of frosh week”, and most fitting for the occasion, the double entendre of song title and motivational message “Four more years”. Through the course of his performance Aucoin used intermittent images from popular television and movies to add discourse to his music, creating an interactive feeling between concert goers and the performer himself. Breaking down the barrier that security gate concert fencing creates, on more than one occasion Rich actually hopped into the crowd to move around, sing, and dance with fans. He took it to the next level by bringing out his kindergarten-esque giant rainbow parachute, reminding students that even though university is a big step, that they had survived this new school jump many times before, and this one would be just as fun as all the others. As Martin “Bucky” Seja of Down With Webster said in the green-room after Rich’s performance, “They should call you Au-Coins, because that was so money, man”.

The members of Down With Webster continued the hype as they turned the beloved Gryphon chant into a full blown song and dance extravaganza. “What was that song you guys were singing between sets? Do you guys have a school chant or something? Do you all know the words?” followed by an eruption of “ONE, we are the Gryphons! TWO, a little bit louder! ...” almost instantaneously, and the band seemed to love it. Dropping a backbeat, bassist Tyler and percussionist Andrew “Marty” Martino, along with Diggy the DJ churned up a Gryphon chant that will not soon be forgotten. After a good hour or so of going hard musically, dancing up a storm, and celebrating the beginning of a new school year, the boys began calming the ruckus with solo sets from Camm and Pat, both of which have been doing some solo work. While Camm treated the crowd to a few rap songs from his solo album, Pat channeled his inner Iggy Azalea with chord-driven rock covers including the ever-contagious Fancy. In fact, there was so much excitement in the crowd that the guys took it easy on the audience, and told them they would skip the part where they go off stage and come back for an encore, since they did not think the crowd could get any louder. “Ain’t nobody got time for that! We’ll just save you guys the trouble” as they went on to play an extended set for an incredibly electric audience.   

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