By Chelsie Popp (@chellybeats)
“A guy walks up to me and asks ‘What’s Punk?’ So I kick over a garbage can and say ‘That’s punk!’ So he kicks over a garbage can and says ‘That’s punk?’ and I say ‘No, that’s trendy!'”
— Billie Joe Armstrong
It’s impossible to define punk, let alone punk music. Punks are keen on being different, so how can you narrow it into one solid definition? It can be violent protest lyrics, killing drinks in a mosh pit, or being socially defiant.
Or forming a band on Craigslist.
Pkew Pkew Pkew, pronounced “gunshots” (clever, right??), are a band from Toronto who chant about growing up, staying young, and getting really inebriated. The entirety of their ‘about’ page screams punk, and as an avid punk-rock show goer, their image and sound is exactly what I’d like to head-bang and fist punch to. They’ve shared stages with popular Toronto band PUP, as well as rock bands Rozwell Kid, Hold Steady and a handful more. This band already has the right group of musicians supporting their journey.
Mike Warne (lead vocals and guitarist) posted an advertisement on Craigslist about his desire to form a band back in 2010, and from that came a quartet of characters driven to create punk music. Warne, Ryan McKinley (guitar, vocals), Emmett O’Reilly (bass, vocals), and David Laino (drums, vocals) make up Pkewx3 and share a love of cheap OV and pizza. See “Let’s Order a Pizza”, the eighth song on their self-titled album. They tag their music on Bandcamp as ‘being broke’, ‘skateboarding’, and ‘beer’ which correlates perfectly with the punk genre. They understand their chosen format well.
Pkew Pkew Pkew’s self-titled, debut LP was released June 10, 2016 and has already received rave reviews. 11 songs about nostalgia, pre-partying, and just hangin’ out, these tunes aren’t very deep by any means but the themes are relatable to those who enjoy the punk scene and their carefree young-adult years. The 21-minute string of songs consists of “punky frat boy party anthems” that you’re sure to dance dizzy to at your favourite venue (amongst other sweaty fans). Which is what being punk is all about, isn’t it? Who knows?
The band just wrapped up their American tour with PUP, playing the Smiling Buddha in Toronto for their album release, and will head out on another tour with Direct Hit this month, hitting up the Bovine Sex Club on July 16. You can also join their mosh at TURF Festival this September, and can purchase the new album online at pkewx3.bandcamp.com.