After reading the review of their recent Toronto show (I was at High on Fire, BTW) and coming across their Against the Seasons album while digging through my CD collection for this all-CanCon thing I’m doing on Sunday afternoons, it occurred to me that I have no fucking clue what happened to the Woods of Ypres shirt I bought in 2005. I know I didn’t get rid of it, but somehow, the fucking thing seems to have disappeared…
First, a little back story. When I moved to Toronto in 2005, one of the first concerts I saw was Day of the Equinox, a festival featuring a buncha bands that were on The End Records at the time, such as Green Carnation, Agalloch, November’s Doom and Deceased. There were probably a couple other bands as well (Unexpect, maybe?), but I don’t really remember them. Opening the show was Woods of Ypres.
I can’t recall how I’d heard of Woods when I was living out in Calgary, but I suspect that I mighta read something about them in BWBK. In any case, I remember thinking how cool it was that I was getting the chance to see this band in concert–a feeling I experienced several times over the next couple years before I turned into a jaded Torontonian who makes frequent trips to the States for shows. Anyways, I hit up their merch table before their set, and grabbed the aforementioned Against the Seasons, along with a T-Shirt. This was before they were selling shirts in forest green, charcoal grey, and other earthy tones, so the choices were the standard band logo on black, or band logo on black–inside a yellow circle, Batman-style. I’m not sure who made the connection between Batman and Woods of Ypres, but at the time, I thought it was pretty badass.
The Batman shirt was part of the first generation of metal t-shirts that I purchased within a couple years of moving to TO. Since Calgary didn’t have too many bands coming through town, I arrived with a mere handful of metal shirts (Black Sabbath, AC/DC and a homemade Accept one), so my first batch of shirts, purchased in 2005-2006, were worn quite regularly. Nowadays, I’ve got so many concert tees that I’ll wear one a couple times, then not see it for 3-4 months. But five years ago, my Woods shirt was in regular rotation, even though I took a chunk outta that yellow circle the first time I washed it.
Not only did my t-shirt collection increase (I have an entire dresser dedicated to them now), but I’ve also changed addresses at least half a dozen times over the past five years before finally finding a place that feels like home. I just moved in last month and, barring any substantial increases in income, I can picture myself staying here for the next few years.
Suffice to say that I’ve been to at least half a dozen laundromats and public laundry rooms in the past half-decade. You know, the places where people will take your laundry out of the machine to put theirs in unless you watch over it the entire time. While giving Against the Seasons a spin recently, it occurred to me that I haven’t worn that shirt in several months, if not years. So, if you see some douchebag in a Woods of Ypres Batman shirt with a chunk missing from the bottom of the logo, feel free to slam him into the nearest stage barrier.
P.S.: Smokin’ Green tonite features a buncha crazy psychedelic shit like Nebula, Quest for Fire and Over-Gain Optimal Death. Tune in from 1 till 3 am at 88.1 fm on yer radio, channel 947 on yer TV, or www.ckln.fm on yer computer. Oh, and I’ll probably be playing some Woods of Ypres on Indie Love in the next couple weeks…