Jesse Alarcón ● 01.26.2022 


After a nice holiday break, it's time to get back into the swing of things. Here is our review of Jesse Alarcón at Kolors Barbershop & Lounge.

DIY punk event on Queens Street W in Toronto

Last week, stacked events were scattered throughout the city for the underground punk and indie rock scene. Thursday night, our initial plan was to head out to the Horseshoe and see our friends from Lucid Smog Disorder at the Horseshoe Tavern. A legendary Queen West venue with two rooms, a pub-like atmosphere with a pool table, and an A&W window inside for quick burgers. Inside the second, much larger room, snug in the back, is a medium-sized stage covered in gold tinsel. 

One of the first pieces of information I always hear about the venue is The Police played there once, however, our favourite show there was Teenage Bottlerocket, and Pedro's was The Longshots; a side project of the infamous band Green Day. The Rolling Stones, Foo Fighters, and Canadian legends The Tragically Hip have all performed at the venue. 

Plans were set and ready to go, and then Black Budget was summoned to play a last-minute show at a barbershop! What!? The lineup featured a band from Milton and Hamilton's Dammit Goldie. We love these intimate and strange venues, and we were excited to see what it was all about. Walking into the Kolors Barbershop & Lounge, you knew you were at a barbershop. In fact, a gentleman was getting his haircut right in front of you. We went back to find Jesse Alarcón, one of the coolest, most passionate, and most down-to-earth people we'd ever met. Packed into this venue are a guitar shop and a rehearsal, both attended by a wonderful lady named Michelle. We loved her!

Right across the street, if you're hungry, you can grab a bite before the show at Gus Tacos. Make sure to grab a burrito if you're there! What a cool neighbourhood. Load-in was simple; now it's time for the show. 

"Camera's ready prepare to flash" The night would be very simple photography, it was a brightly lit room, no crazy lights, a perfect shoot to do some good old fashion punk photographs.

First up on the night was Mule King, a powerful trio from Milton. This band immediately caught the attention of the entire room with groovy bass, fuzzy guitar riffs, and hard-hitting, powerful drums. We hadn't been introduced to this band before, and what a way to find a new band we enjoy! Definitely be on alert for Mule King and check them out live.  

Dammit Goldie came next, with their nostalgic riffs. Goldie, you brought the entire room back to the year 2000. Their powerful sound brought me back to an era of music I grew up listening to while also adding their own spin and uniqueness to the songs. I would recommend everyone check out their new single, "Medusa," for a perfect representation of their sound.  

Last on the bill was Black Budget. Pedro, as you could tell, had a blast playing, and it was such a good time performing with the boys on stage. Black Budget felt that they had a great show, and as always, they were super excited and full of energy during our set. One of his favourite parts of performing live is connecting with the audience, and he thinks that at this place, which was so out of the ordinary, we managed to lock in with the crowd really well. They played a new song and changed the set list completely—a perfect set to kick 2023 off.