Wave hits the stage for their first full show together in fourteen years.
Everyone has that band. The one you listened to constantly and think back on fondly. For me? That band is Wave. For those of you who don't know...they were a Canadian duo from the early 2000s. My obsession was real. I spent most of my high school days doodling their names on my notebook, listening to their music, and going to their shows in Toronto. By the end of their run, I had seen them at least a dozen times. I would go to concerts, mall appearances, television tapings, and everything in between. Seeing them brought me joy. Turns out? It still does.
Wave got back together for a one-off show in their hometown of Niagara Falls. They were the headliners for the second day of the Niagara Falls Beer Festival. Since Wave is a massively important part of my history (I used to draw pictures of them and even ran my own Wave fan website. Oh, memories!) there was no doubt in my mind. I needed to be there. And so the begging began. I immediately phoned my parents and asked them to take me. Why? They used to take me to see Wave back when I was in high school. It was a blast from the past in the best possible way.
Me before the Wave concert. I went with lots of liquid liner and a smile!
When we got to the Beer Festival it was not quite what I expected. There were a few people walking around. A few more sitting and drinking. The streets were lined with a few beer taps and food trucks. Then there was a large stage in the middle of a grassy area. This was it? The place of the Wave reunion? Despite the so-so locale.....I was nervous. Anxious. Excited. After all, it had been fourteen years since I last saw them perform. So we grabbed a seat and waited. I could see Dave and Paul milling around before the show. They were talking to family members....then sound people....there wasn't a chance for me to approach. Not that it mattered anyway. I was completely terrified. It was like stepping back in time. I was fourteen years old all over again. Totally in awe of the band that I loved so much.
Before long they were on stage. The fans went up to the front of the stage and everyone else stayed behind in lawn chairs. With my front row spot....I was in my glory. They sounded even better than I remembered. And they had an incredible set list. It wasn't just full of singles. They played album songs. Songs that had been a part of my life since 2001. The best part? The fact that they played my absolute favourite song, So High. (The one song that Dave sang lead on. Therefore a must listen.) They also played my favourite song from the first album, Until The Record Breaks. It was a seriously stellar set list.
Dave Thomson rocking out at the Wave reunion show.
I loved singing along to every single song. It is amazing that even after all these years.....I still have all the lyrics committed to memory. They mean something to me. They matter. The only way the show would have been better? If the crowd had been a little more enthusiastic. There were a few fans there but it was mostly casual listeners, family, and friends. I definitely miss the days of lining up hours beforehand only to get a third or fourth row spot. (What a weird thing to write!) At any rate, the performance itself was wonderful. I was on cloud nine. I felt free and happy. It was one of the best experiences I have had in a long while. Yes, it was an hour and a half of pure bliss.
There was a little disappointment after the show ended. My mom was not feeling the Beer Festival and demanded that we leave immediately. So I left, disappointed, without meeting Wave. I don't know what I would have said to them exactly. Maybe I would have gushed. Or played it cool. Or maybe I would have made an absolute fool of myself. Who knows? I just wanted the chance to find out. But it was just like my high school days all over again. My parents set the rules.
Overall though, it was a great experience. While I wish it had ended on a better note....it was still an incredible day. Seeing Wave perform was a dream I had long given up on. The concert gave me the chance to go back in time a little bit. To reminisce. To re-discover my happy place. I will never forget it.