A nineties rock revival at the Rose

Sometimes, at least when it comes to rock music, you can go home again. It may have been The Who in 1989 or The Eagles in 1994, but somewhere along the line, the idea of revisiting past glory became synonymous with rock ‘n’ roll.

Canadian alternative-rock veterans I Mother Earth and Finger Eleven teamed up last year for a cross-country tour that met with such success they’ve decided to continue through 2019. The tour checks into The Rose Theatre on Jan. 12.

“Finger 11 and I Mother Earth are two of Canada’s most iconic and successful hard rock bands,” says Jocelyn Johnston, Rose Theatre’s acting artistic director. “They’re not only industry peers, but good friends, too, which makes this tour even more special.”

The pairing is an ideal recipe for a rock revival. The two bands toured together across the country in their early days and have been friends ever since. Of course, in the past twenty years or so both groups have had ups and downs. I Mother Earth had a prolonged split from their lead singer while Finger Eleven has struggled, at times, in recent years to maintain their voice. With both bands in the studio creating new music, they are poised to reclaim their place in the Canadian music scene.

Burlington’s Finger Eleven has been nominated for eight Juno Awards, winning rock album of year in 2008. They were also the recipients of the International Achievement Award at the 2006 Society of Composers, Authors and Music Publishers of Canada (SOCAN) awards.

After years of hiatus, Toronto’s I Mother Earth made their way back to the scene in 2012. In 2016, after years of separation, the Juno Award-winning group reunited with their vocalist, Edwin, to celebrate the 20th anniversary of their multi-platinum release, Scenery and Fish.

The idea for a shared cross-Canada tour came together from a simple comment that I Mother Earth drummer, Christian Tanna, made on the Finger Eleven Facebook page. They posted about a show in their hometown of Burlington that had been previously rained out. Christian posted, “Glad you got that show in fellas! What say we all move this indoors now!?! See ya soon!”

That sparked much speculation and cross-talk among fans of the two bands. After much adieu and many online threads, the bands staged a video call and made it official. The show was on.

The concerts on this tour are tailored to the fan experience too. The evening starts out with an acoustic set and question and answer period before complete electric sets by each band.

The acoustic set features a mix of original music and covers as well as the aforementioned Q and A. Members of both band’s join forces for versions of Ride Like The Wind by Christopher Cross, America’s Horse With No Name, The Kinks’ Lola, and Peter Gabriel’s Solsbury Hill.

Each band’s electric sets won’t disappoint fans either. Finger Eleven’s will feature Living in a Dream, Quicksand, One Thing, Tip, Drag You Down and Paralyzer. Of course, I Mother Earth will be sure to include Not Quite Sonic, One More Astronaut and Summertime In The Void.

At the end of the show, both bands come together for a special encore. They each share a performance of one of their original tunes, Levitate from I Mother Earth’s catalogue and Good Times from Finger Eleven. To close out the show, the bands share one last tune, a rocked up cover of Supertramp’s Bloody Well Right.

“It’s going to be a fun, high-energy performance,” says Johnston.

I Mother Earth & Finger Eleven perform at the Rose Theatre on Jan. 12 at 8 p.m. Tickets are available by calling 905-874-2800 or by clicking here

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