By Jay Broderick - The Coronavirus that swept through the world in 2020 was one of the most significant events in most of our lifetime. In fact, the magnitude was (is?) a medical anomaly that hasn't been witnessed for 100 years. The results quite frankly, were devastating for many. Millions of people worldwide, and their families, paid the highest price. Many businesses couldn't overcome the lock-downs resulting in major financial strife, and billions of people were forced to maneuver through mental health challenges, the likes of which we have never seen.
Another demographic that was devastated during the 2+ years of the pandemic was our music community. Witnessed first hand, the moniker "Starving Artist" is as true as any I have ever heard. It's difficult as it is for musicians to make a living. The largest bands in the world are just fine, but they never got there over night. These bands have put it many hard years of recording, and touring before they hit the jackpot, but even still, the chances of making it to this level are not in everybody's favour. So to have your bread and butter taken from you for a 2 to 3 year period can be disastrous.
Not all is lost however, for those that share their art through music. The resulting isolation allowed nothing but time. It was prime opportunity with lots of subject matter, and the ability to write new material. And for some new artists, it allowed a chance to perfect their sound, opening doors to freedoms they quite possibly may not have had otherwise. Not for lack of talent, but to be in the right place at the right time.
Toronto's Fluffio is a punk rock artist that burst onto the scene post-pandemic. Since the walls came down, Fluffio has made his presence known by playing some of the city's most iconic venues, to sold out crowds. With it has come a growing fanbase, who instantly soaked in the musician's work, learning the lyrics and singing along during these live events.
On March 16th, 2023, to much anticipation, Fluffio released the first EP TV Generation. The EP consists of 4 tracks, each with a different style of the punk genre, yet somehow working together for a sound that is uniquely its own.
The 1st track on TV Generation is "Runaway". The track immediately cuts in to the chorus, and is reminiscent of the "modern day" punk movement from bands like Sum 41 and Blink-182. When the first verse kicks in however, I'm taken back to punk from the late 70s and early 80s. The song has those high tempo guitar riffs that are standard for this genre, and lyrically, it's fast paced and by the opening second, we're thrown right into the sound that is synonymous with punk.
"Blame" is the second song on this EP, and it keeps the same pace that "Runaway" set. A quick count in by the clacking of drum sticks, and we're thrown into a more typical angry punk track. Lyrically, not as poppy as its predecessor, and full steam ahead. It's basically a "Fuck You" that closes with a scream of frustration, that ties completely with the subject matter. It's a great stress reliever for when things aren't going so well, and for me is the standout track on this EP.
The title track "TV Generation" is musically similar to the first 2 songs with its no nonsense pace. Lyrically however, it's a little more responsible than the typical teenage angst of "Blame". The accompanying backing vocal "Whoa, oh, ohs" adds another layer, making for a much fuller sound.
Closing off Fluffio's debut EP is "Destiny" and the opening riff, and following accompanying crunch of guitars is almost metal-esque. The tempo of this track does not allow a break for the listener, and you have to be on your game to follow along with the lyrics as they are lightning fast along with the rest of the track. More angry sounding gravelly vocals and screams during the last stanza makes me not want the EP to end.
TV Generation is a very impressive debut EP that highlights Fluffio's talents in his song writing and playing. Sometimes you just need a kick in the face without a lot of overthinking. In this case TV Generation delivers the goods.
Fluffio has attracted a quick following, and the EP is clear indication why. With the artist playing sold out events within a short time of his debut, the sky's the limit. Keep your eyes peeled for shows in your area, as you're likely to hear this name again in the future.