BAND KEEPS THINGS SAUCY WITH UNPREDICTABLE SERVINGS OF ENTERTAINMENT
Written by Johnny Papan
You Big Idiot live to entertain. From outrageously comedic antics both on and off the stage to an entire full-length album dedicated to donair, the skate-punk quintet from Port Moody uses their pop-laden speed riffage and jocular lyrics to tickle your funnies as you jostle in the pit. Their sound is upbeat and their performances have an almost children’s birthday party for adults atmosphere.
“We’ve had almost 40 different costumes and themes to date, from bumblebees to grandmas, cowboys, all of us dressed as Slash,” says drummer Steve Pearson, who started the band alongside his brother, frontman Colin Pearson, in 2009. The band lasted less than a year before returning in 2014.
“During our first few shows, we wore Hawaiian shirts at one of them and dressed as Christmas characters at another,” Pearson states. “We didn’t really think about it, we just did it. After that, people began asking us what we would be wearing at our next show? Is this a thing now? We figured we had to give the people what they wanted. The next show we dressed up as a barbershop quartet, and it took off from there. We began adding skits to the shows, props, sound effects, theme music, and getting friends from other bands to guest star with us on stage. If we didn’t receive the support from the scene as we had, it wouldn’t have lasted. They seem to enjoy it, so we’ll keep doing it.”
Currently, the lineup consists of the Pearson brothers, bass/vocalist Shaefer Carson, guitar/vocalist Kurt Anderson and guitar/yeller Chris Hogan. The band recently released a cover version of “The Sign” by Ace of Base. They also collaborated with The Corps on a three-song EP entitled The Vanberries, a tribute to the Cranberries. However, what people still seem to still be talking about is their recent full-length, 2018's Mega Donair.
“For almost 20 years our parents let our bands practice in their basement,” Pearson says. “While we were working on the new album, we frequented the donair shop that was a couple of blocks away from their house called Mega Donair. The owners asked us why we were coming in so often. Late one night, we were sitting around the table without a name for the album, and suddenly it became clear. Mega Donair. It was unanimous, and we never looked back.”
You Big Idiot took a unique approach promoting the album. They filmed themselves eating the illustrious mega donair with their album playing in the background. By the end of the video, which was shot by Trav Anema, the band is sweating and seemingly in pain.
“The donairs we ate in the video are the ‘Mega’ size, and they are absolutely gigantic,” Pearson explains. “If you’re going to go try MD for yourself, which I recommend, you’re probably better off with a Regular or a Super. Eating a Mega in one sitting by yourself is awfully painful.”
You Big Idiot are co-headlining the Winter Classique on January 11, playing alongside The Corps, Dead End Drive-In and Contra Code at Fortune Sound Club. The festival is promoted by Russian Tim, the host of CiTR's Rocket From Russia radio show. You Big Idiot also recently performed at Tim's Rocket From Russia Fest, where the band dressed as D-Generation X, a classic and crude faction from the professional wrestling promotion, WWE.
“For us, we try to appeal to anyone coming to the show. Not everyone is going to enjoy the style of music you play, but if you put on a fun show, they’re going to enjoy it. We want to give people something to watch, reasons to laugh and bring energy to our shows. If we’re rocking out and having fun, it’s contagious. Most importantly, we want to play well. If you come on stage wearing costumes, you better bring it.”
You Big Idiot plays Russian Tim's Winter Classique at Fortune Sound Club on January 11.