This last Tuesday I had the opportunity to watch Five Alarm Funk perform at O’Hanlon’s. The band consists of ten members playing a wide range of instruments including guitars, trombone, congas, drums, trumpet, timbales, saxophone, and bass. The crew crammed on the small stage around 11pm and it was immediately evident the patrons were in for a stupendous night. Bursting out into a fusion of funk, rock, latin, and Bhangra music the crowd was ecstatic. The dance floor was overflowing with dancers high on energy. Throughout the set Tayo Branston, the lead percussionist, told a ludicrous tale of an evil Ice Cream Man.
Five Alarm Funk stopped for an intermission; a chance for the crowd to get rehydrated. The second set was another amazing performance of music, dance, and antics. The band played with a passion and vigour second to no other band I’ve seen. The crowd played off of this intensity. I have never witnessed a crowd so engaged in the spectacle and music. Five Alarm Funk is truly an “unstoppable orgy of energy” as described on their website.
The band stops in Regina about once a year. The next time they do, come prepared to dance!