CMW 2014: Cub Sport @ The Dakota Tavern

FRIDAY — I'm not sure I can remember the last time I saw a band win over an audience as convincingly as Cub Sport did on Friday night. At first, the crowd seemed a bit skeptical of the young Australian indie poppers. Armed with synths and a seemingly endless supply of candy-coated hooks, the group doesn't exactly play the kind of music the Dakota Tavern is best known for — a venue more often home to acts with a folk or country tinge, or a hint of old time rock & roll. As Cub Sport took the stage, it seemed likely that most of the people in the room were there to catch the next act: The High Dials. And as the Australians began to play, the plaid-clad Canadian crowd watched quietly and sipped from their pints.

But the hooks Cub Sport brought with them from the other side of the world are truly infectious. As the set wore on and the room began to fill, the crowd's reserve began to give way. Toes tapped. Heads nodded along. Smiles spread across faces. And then, a few tracks in, the band brought out the big guns: a cover of Destiny Child's "Jumpin', Jumpin'". The dam broke. People sang along, moved their hips, and when it was over they gave the song one of the biggest cheers I heard all week. After that, the band had the people on their side. By the end of the show, it was clear: the very first Canadian set of Cub Sport's very first Canadian tour was a rousing success.





Read all our coverage of CMW 2014 here.

Photos by Carmen Cheung, the Arts Editor for The Little Red Umbrella.

Words by Adam Bunch, the Editor-in-Chief of the Little Red Umbrella and the creator of the Toronto Dreams Project. You can read his posts here, follow him on Twitter here, or email him at


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