All too often the best bands in this city go out without a bang. No final show, no t-shirts, not even a recording. All they have left is to fade away into our distant memories. When the Hanging Horses came to an end in 2005 it looked as if they would share this common fate.
The group was comprised of lead songwriter Matt Spence (guitar, vocals, harmonica, keyboard, glockenspiel) with Victor Lewis (bass, lap steel, keyboard, melodica, glockenspiel, backing vocals), Eric Penny (guitar, bass, drums) and Andrew Mast (drums). The eclectic four-piece would leave you describing them with a never ending sentence. “Well they play catchy indie rock stuff, but sometimes with gruff punk-y parts, lots of country twang and folk parts…I like the lyrics ….oh and they do Ol’Dirty Bastard covers too!” I would tell my friends.
Soon after the band’s demise last year; Penny made the move for Montreal, then during this summer; Spence and Lewis also decided to part ways with the city and move to Korea and Gander. It seemed like all hope was lost for the Horses, but Lewis and Spence, who had been playing together as the Spurmen, would not let themselves be forgotten quite so easily. They dug up unfinished recordings that the band had worked on before the break up and added the final touches to the tracks; just before the two parted ways.
You can laugh and sing along with lyrics “up, up, down, down, left, right, left right, B, A, select start. Now it’s 1987, the red falcon awaits in the jungle, I need 99 lives to survive the heat seeking missiles” or hear Spence’s heartfelt plea of “Let’s get connected, let’s get in common, if you bring the passion, I’ll bring the condoms. You’re a hungry lady and I’m a hungry man, we can eat each other. I’m sick and tired of it”. If you are like me you will wish you saw them more often when you had the chance, but be happy that now you have the CD to listen to whenever you want.
The 13 song CDr and a new solo CDr by Matt Spence care available at Fred’s Records.