New Calgary post-punk pop-rock unit Pancake is all spice and everything nice

Tuesday 26th, July 2016 / 14:55
By Arielle Lessard
Pancake show humour and humanity in first interview. Photo: Ben Painter

Pancake show humour and humanity in first interview.
Photo: Ben Painter

CALGARY — Sure to cast an impression, Pancake drips with possibility. Formed at a house show Melinda Massolas (vocals/guitar) organized, Pancake “crawled up from the sewers,” as Justin Van Groningen (drums) puts it, and stuck together to play an all-ages show at the National Music Centre. The four-piece lives in an interesting place, with their live post-punk meets pop-rock performances existing under the earnest influence of real fruit flavour and no-bullshit young soul.

Pancake is filled with digestible lyrics like “don’t fuck your friends” to serve as gentle reminders that growing up is marred by silly stupors. Their nascent song, “Brendan’s Dick Residue (B.D.R)” remains a tribute to guitarist Brendan Long who, with his oddball nature, is more comfortable swinging his hips and making over-the-top gestures while onstage. The tunes are good enough to carry his Bono wraparounds off into the sunset.

Inspired by the likes of Rockin’ with Judy Jetson, Massolas grew up watching the heroine, “who wanted to give it to this rock star Sky Rocker and ended up saving the world through the power of music, love and all that good stuff.” Calgary’s own Jean Sebastian Audet is also a big influence, Massolas says. “Watching him really made me feel like I could do this too because he was young and black, and so was I.”

While their one-year anniversary is fast approaching, Pancake has a distinctly promising sound and a lot of growing room. With thoughts of Stampede breakfasts, touring and playing next year’s Sled Island, they’re nothing if not quietly determined. “I want to see pancakes at all our shows, but so far the closest we’ve come is a cheese bun,” says bassist Tricia Minions. Pancake is a shining example of what goes right when young, unassuming artists have big dreams and time to kill.

While they’re waiting on mixing and mastering of their first album, catch them live on July 29th with Windigo and Fever Feel at The Palomino, as well as Long’s mom’s birthday party that promises to be “off the wall and include lots of wine.” Pancake is a crude gem and a welcome new arrival. 

Catch Pancake at The Palomino on July 29th with Windigo and Fever Feel.

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