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The Hamilton Spectator, Wednesday June 7, 1978

By Doreen Pitkeathly, Spectator Staff - At The Clubs

Imps combine top material with powerful visual show


While the club circuit can seem like an endless repetition for many bands, every once in a while one group breaks through to provide inspiration for all.

FRANK SODAThe Imps, a three member Toronto-based band, are doing just that.

The Imps have been playing the Ontario club circuit for about three years, ever since coming to this part of the country as the back-up band for artist, Thor.

They've established themselves as a popular act with a flair for gimmicks and rather peculiar theatrics. But it wasn't until leader Frank Soda started breaking in some of his original tunes, that The Imps really started to move.

"The band has just started as far as I'm concerned," said a rather exhausted Soda between sets at the Runway last night where The Imps appeared in the first night of a two night engagement.

"We're doing all original stuff now and heading into the concert scene. People are really getting off on the music."

But it hasn't been luck that's responsible for the Imps' success. In the past few years the band has progressed from an adequate musical talent performing all copy material, but visually strong, to a band that performs first-rate original material combined with a powerful visual show. The Imps have obviously been working hard.

"It feels really good," said Soda. "For a while people thought the stage show was a cover-up for the material. Now that we're doing the original material and everyone likes it, the show only serves to enhance the music."

The show that Soda refers to is a constant barrage of stage antics guaranteed to keep attention rivetted on the three members. With a curtained area at the side of the stage, Soda frequently disappears behind it, emerging with a television set, a camera, or something of the sort wedged over his head, depending on the theme of the song. It's definitely entertaining and as Soda says, enhances rather than detracts from the music.

The music of The Imps is powerful, energetic rock with interesting subject matter and convincingly offered by guitarist Soda, bassist Charles Towers and Drummer John Lechesseur.

The transformation to an original concept came several months ago when The Imps released a live album from a club in Toronto. Now they're at work on a second album and have a date at the El Mocambo in Toronto next week. Later this month they'll be featured in a concert at The Delta in Hamilton.

Despite success, you can be sure The Imps will be a regular attraction in Hamilton because, according to Soda, this city holds some of the band's biggest fans.