Album release party makes audience Feverish
The Fevers’ “24 Hour Fever” event may have begun as nothing more than a pun, but it ended a roaring success.
The Ottawa band played three sets of music over the course of 24 hours, including a minimalist set at Mugshots and an acoustic rooftop set in Chinatown before closing out with a full club set at Mavericks on Aug. 24.
Fevers organized the event to celebrate the launch of their debut album, No Room for Light.
“We wanted to do something a little bit different,” said guitarist/vocalist Colin MacDougall. “To be honest, I actually think it started with the name ‘24 Hour Fever.’ It started with a stupid name so we thought, what could we do within a 24 hour period?”
From there, the band got the idea of playing sets in different musical styles, which MacDougall admitted was, at times, an overwhelming task.
“It’s kind of silly of us to actually do this because we really had to re-learn our songs in two different ways,” said MacDougall. “When you start to practice you’re like ‘oh shit, how are we going to pull this off?’”
The decision to play three different sets was also a result of playing in a smaller city where they were likely to have many of the same audience members at each performance.
The band decided to come to Ottawa for the launch despite the city’s size because they wanted to return home to celebrate it.
“This is our hometown, it makes the most sense,” said MacDougall. “The album launch is special for us, but it’s also special for a lot of our friends. It would feel weird to go try to make a splash in a big city.”
The massive undertaking meant the band had little time to be nervous, MacDougall said. Instead, they needed to focus on their somewhat hectic preparation schedule of co-ordinating logistics and practicing their songs. This included having to plan their sound check in Mugshots around a tight schedule so as not to interrupt the Ottawa Haunted Walk tours, he said.
Nonetheless, the band pulled together and were in high spirits on the eve of the show.
“It’s really exciting,” MacDougall said before the event kicked off. “I can’t wait.”
The set began a little tense, but the band fell into an eerie calm as the show went on. Lead singer Sarah Bradley sang haunting, ethereal vocal lines in the dim courtyard, right beneath the window where Ottawa’s last hanging took place.
Bassist Jim Hopkins said that the show was interesting, and a good way to start, but he and the rest of the band were really looking forward to the closing show.
“Now we really get to let loose,” Hopkins said. And let loose they did.
After a few high energy songs, the band was all smiles. All of the members were dancing around the stage and MacDougall and Bradley were throwing cheerful banter into the crowd effortlessly.
The band played dramatic highs and lows throughout the night, bringing all of Mavericks to its feet. When all was said and done, Fevers showed Ottawa how to launch an album in style.