Vancouver B.C.’s Five Alarm Funk is a horn-powered, percussion-fueled sonic and visual assault, which has just cracked 20K followers on Facebook. In over 18 years of hard funking, the band has burned up stages on four continents (including annual appearances at London’s TD Sunfest), released seven studio albums, and received two JUNO Award nominations. And this ride isn’t about to slow down! FAF dropped its new EP Live from the Commodore last month, and its 7th studio album, Big Smoke, last summer. The 11 tracks on the latter release get right to the roots of what the group is all about: epic, intense arrangements, heavy grooves and a ton of fun.
As drummer, vocalist and bandleader Tayo Branston puts it, “Big Smoke is the tightest, funkiest and most energized album we’ve ever created, it’s the culmination of years of creating, recording and performing together. We call it Punk Funk – it’s got the punch of heavy hitting dance music with the energy of a ruckus live concert.”
For all the honing of their studio craft, Five Alarm Funk’s epic live shows are still what define the band (though in these pandemic times, a streamed session for TD Sunfest Connected is the next best thing). Its sweat-drenched concerts are infused with an intense spirit of fun that breaks down barriers between band and audience and moves both into a manic dance party. Wild costumes, props, and choreography complement the seriously tight arrangements and genre-mashing grooves. As a fan posted on FAF’s website, “I lost control and went on a dance rampage… You guys blew my mind and body.”