Move over Christmas, Pouzza Fest has stolen that cozy little nook in my heart reserved for my most favouritest annual (not to be confused with anal) event!
While this was only my second time experiencing ze Montreal-based punk rawk festival, that's all the times I need to declare it to the 'most wonderful time of the year' for me.
It's like Hugo is Santa but with tattoos in place of that ugly red and white coat, and his rock star team of organizers are the happy little elves making it all possible. They bring delinquents from all over the world some of the greatest bands and the most solid show lineups possible.
This year, they gave me something I've been begging the punk rock Claus for for years.. - Dillinger Four - and if happiness was a boner consider me still hard as a rock and raging from that performance weeks later.
It's a tad difficult to recap the festival fully because by now it's just a big drunken blur of euphoria in my head, and my method of texting myself review notes while I was wasted and watching the bands kinda backfired when my phone decided to turn it's language from English to French all on it's freakin' own as soon as I got in Quebec, making drunk typing extremely difficult since it no longer recognized the correct spelling of any English words and instead chose to edit everything to the closest French confabulation, leaving me with no fucking clue what I was trying to type looking back.


There's definitely a handful of experiences that still stand out in the drunk haze blanketed over the weekend in my mind, and those are the following:

Oh my god, Night Birds!
I totally popped my PM loving feathered creature performance cherry and it was by far one of the best poppin's of the entire festival. Fuck do those guys know how to destroy a stage. I couldn't take my eyes off the singer who was entertaining as fuck, pretending to puke over the audience and simulating jerking off his mic into the crowd. So fucking funny, so fucking tight, and they actually killed it so hard that I was a little afraid of them by the end.

I feel like an idiot for ignoring this band for so long, and always thinking their name was Two Car Garage which is dumb. Despite hearing about them a shit ton I had never actually listened to them, assuming they weren't along the lines of something I'd enjoy. I have NO idea why I thought that, because as soon as I accidentally started watching their set at Pouzza they managed to lasso my heart, tame it, and ride it as I stood there with my mouth gaping open, cowboy hat over cowboy boots in love. 
Definitely my most unexpected discovery of the weekend.

As mentioned above, all I ever wanted was to see this band live. I've been waiting for years, so my expectations were pretty fucking high. I think everybody who saw them can agree that they were one of the absolute best performances of all time at any Pouzza. Well, maybe that's just me (and I haven't even been to all of them), but I'm the only opinion that matters in this review, suckers. Seriously though, expectations not only met but totally fucking crushed like the aliens were in Santa Claus Conquers The Martians.

This unfortunately was NO.'s final show because their drummer got deported (fuck you Canada!) and it was a performance to fucking remember. I'm really sad that I only got to experience their energetic wacked out set once prior to this ending, but both this and the Toronto show I saw have stuck out in my mind despite the disgusting amount of liquor I drank because of how fucking insane they were both times. I can't wait to see what the dudes remaining in this country will do next.
Here's just a taste of a bit of that last performance.

Gave up seeing The Front Bottoms who I have an embarrassing ear-boner to see these guys, and guess what, NO REGRETS. At all. Ever. Even though everyone I knew who saw the FB's told me how amazing it was. Doesn't matter 'cause The Creeps are one of my favourite bands who I've never had the pleasure of seeing before now, and they were flawless.

Now, this set is pretty fucking blurry, about as blurry as the damn pictures I was taking of it (see below). However, I still remember without a doubt that it rocked my socks right off my feet. Especially when one Nick from Wasted Potential got up on stage to perform with them.

It doesn't matter how many times I hear "Let's hear it for Chixdiggit!", I laugh, cheer and applaude every fucking time. Just like it doesn't matter how many times I see this band, my heart boner will never stop growing for them.

These guys never disappoint. Ever. And that new album is one of my favourites of this year, maybe even of all time, and hearing those songs live for the first time just made me wet. In the face I mean. Because I was crying. Tears of joy I mean. ... who am I kidding I was totally wet in the pants. Heyooo!

If you can't tell how amazing it was from that then, this blog is probably too way below your IQ level.

Those are my highlights - not including the following sets from Toronto bands that I had initially told myself I wasn't going to see since they're from where I'm from. However, the 'bros before (other band's) shows' rule took effect immediately after I started to drink, and the first thing I saw was my buds in Wasted Potential who whopped my ass with one of their most rockin' sets to date. Every other Toronto act I caught followed suit - Plan 37, Stuck Out Here, School DamageBrutal Youth (who I actually left D4 early to catch, YEAH I KNOW) - I don't know if it was something in the Montreal air, or the poutines, or just the excessive drinking I did, but each one of them put on what could easily have been the best show I've ever seen them play. This includes The Victim Party's acoustic set during the hangover breakfast at Foufs too, which was something they'd never done before that ended up sounding so amazing that I hope they do it again!
Last but not least on the local scale I caught Toronto legends Junior Battles at their secret show and was totally bedazzled by their set and the insane energy coming from the crowd. It was such a blast!

And, at the risk of this becoming way too long-winded, I feel I need to shout out to Mace Ballard, Hold Tight!, Old Flings, The Tired and True, The Penske File and Rust Belt Lights, all of which I'm sure had killer sets at Pouzza but who I ended up actually catching at my Post-Pouzza Punk Party back in Toronto on the following Monday. THEY ARE ALL SO FUCKING GOOD. Check them out if you haven't already!

Favourite moment:
Patty from Brutal Youth jumping from the balcony into a crowd made up of enough friends to catch him before he fell to his death. During his set, btw.

Biggest disappointment:
Not eating pouzza/enough poutine.

Band I wish I saw but didn't see:
The Hunters, and the only reason I didn't go was because they're coming to Toronto on Thursday June 5th, though after listening to their new album Art Electric religiously for the last few weeks I really regret not catching them in Montreal as well.

Funniest Pouzza moment:
Recruiting a very drunk Jon Snodgrass to find out whether or not D4 were playing a secret set, and then immediately losing him to the band as he forgot his mission completely.

BUT WAIT, there's more!
Here's some quick interview clips from Pouzza done with a pretty shitty camera and by an even shittier editor (me). Sorry in advance!


And to sum up my how I felt about Pouzza this year, here's Mace Ballard:

I'm Sarah. I do what I want.