Published Jul 27, 2019The 2019 instalment of Phillips Brewing's Wonka-like Backyard Weekender marked the first time on the West coast for Random Recipe, a genre-bending quartet from Montreal who blend pop, rap, funk, reggae, folk, electro and god knows what else. Unfortunately, after playing Squamish, Surrey and a couple of secret shows in Vancouver, they did not quite receive the greatest experience from B.C.'s capital city.
Their set ended up starting some 50 minutes late, as the schedule was knocked around due to a late sound check by the headliners. They did their best to speed through an abridged half-hour set, but as they attempted to fit in a quick final track before they hit the plane for the Calgary Folk Fest, the Weekender crew cut off their instruments, denying them that one final tune in somewhat embarrassing fashion.
Regardless of that, they made good use of the time they had. Rapper/beatboxer Fab had an engaging presence, working the front of the stage, bouncing to the beat, acting out lyrics with her free hand while the other held the mic. The band cruised through "Shipwreck" from their 2010 album Fold It! Mold It!, but Fab really came to life for "This Mess," the softly stepping, summery downtempo jam from 2018's Distractions.
Guitarist and vocalist Frannie Holder flashed some flow on the mic for "Hey Boy," their song about female world domination, that the day women finally take over this burning garbage heap of a planet, men should be wary that karma is a bitch. Later, Frannie and Fab prowled the stage trading verses on "Beautiful Connection" from 2013's Kill the Hook, while a bassist and drummer Liu-Kong Ha teased out a sparse, haunting beat. Their melting pot distilled many such fine moments.
Admittedly, my first impression of Random Recipe was that they didn't make much of one, but they grew on me over the course of their set. You owe them one, Victoria.