Tonella and The Strain live at Pepper’s Pub

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Appearing live on Jan. 18 at Pepper’s was both Tonella, based out of Fredericton, and The Strain hailing all the way from Quebec. I was a little disappointed to see a small turnout at Pepper’s because both of these bands gave quite the performance.

The two bands delivered an exciting show, with lots of energy and passion in their music. Where Tonella was more indie rock, The Strain was a pop rock band, making them a diverse combination, which is always a bonus when going out to see live music.

Tonella’s vocalist, Tonella Roy, demonstrates not only her wide variety of vocal range, but also demonstrates her impressive piano skills. She acts as the driving force for the band, tying together clever guitar work with piano melodies. The outcome is overall, fun and exciting.

There is a certain emotional intensity to her vocal stylings that kept me engaged on the lyrics.

The band is ECMA nominated and have been around since 2010. The direction that Tonella is heading is in the right direction so listen for them, you will not regret it.

This was the first time I had heard of the The Strain. From the most English part of Quebec, The Strain provided not only powerful rhythms with complimenting guitar work and pleasant vocal work, but also provided a unique brand of entertainment.

By incorporating catchy and fun lyrics with a strong bass presence and intense guitar work, they were still fun and energetic, never taking themselves too seriously.

The Strain is currently in the process of completing their Maritimes tour, so be sure to check them out if you venture beyond Saint John. These are both bands that you won’t want to miss, so keep your eyes peeled for their tour dates.

To check out these bands and more, go to The Baron’s YouTube page at

Emily is in her fourth year of Political Science. She loves studying and academics which follows into her research work. She's a stern black coffee drinker and is a proud Acadienne. When she's not working or doing school work, you can find Emily listening to 70s music on vinyl and watching Parks and Recreation. If you ask her about parliamentary institutions, she won't stop talking.