Arkells bring the Rally Cry Tour to Buffalo


Photo by Buffalo State graduate, Emily Knab

Bethany Clancy, Culture Editor

When the Candian alternative-pop band Arkells comes to Buffalo, they mean business. It’s highly recommended to wear your dancing shoes. That being said, Arkells love Buffalo and it’s safe to say that Buffalo loves Arkells right back.

When the band headed out with St. Lucia in the fall, right before the release of their fifth full-length album, “Rally Cry,” fans in Western New York were bummed that there was not a Buffalo date. The band’s Twitter account kept teasing and promising fans in the area that they were not forgotten about.

The anticipated American leg of the Rally Cry tour had been announced which started in February with some Canadian dates.

As promised, Buffalo received two dates on the tour.

Two nights at the Town Ballroom could be deemed as risky for most artists, but Arkells pulled through. The first night had sold out within five minutes of being on sale and it took the second night only forty-five seconds.

During the February performances, lead vocalist, Max Kerman said that the band had the opportunity to play at Shea’s Performing Art Center, but they wanted to play their favorite venue in Buffalo: Town Ballroom.

Arkells have been playing Buffalo for years, often playing free Canalside concerts, and have been making a big name for themselves in the area ever since their first show.

The doubleheader began with a quirky pop band, The Greeting Committee, from Kansas City. The bands’ biography on states that the band sees themselves as a “massive art project and want to get as many creative minds involved as possible, which includes the listeners.” Their performance at the Town Ballroom got listeners involved by requiring a lot of crowd participation.

Thanks to lead singer, Addie Sartino and her bright colored jumpsuits running through the crowd signing in fans faces, hand clapping, and a cover of MGMT’s “Kids,” the crowd was riled up for Arkells.

With Kerman battling a stomach bug both nights, the band played for two hours both nights, including songs from each album, a cover of ABBA’s “Dancing Queen,” and “Don’t Do It,” by The Band.

Even with a stomach bug, his relentless energy was shining throughout the venue both nights.

The Buffalo-loving Canadians consider the city an attachment to Canada with it being a short twenty-minute drive over the Peace Bridge. They made sure to emphasize their favorite place to get wings (Gabriel’s Gate) and then their go-to bar, Frizzy’s, where you can get a case of Rolling Rock for ten dollars.

The night had ended with the single off of “Morning Report,” and confetti filled the venue.

From conga-lining through the venue to anti-Donald Trump comments, it shows that the Arkells can pull off a fun-filled, goofy performance and still take on a serious topic.

It is almost guaranteed that every single person leaving the Town Ballroom those two nights was smiling from ear to ear, wishing the night hadn’t ended.