Creatures of rock

The Creepshow spreads sinister psychobilly sound

The Creepshow is currently touring in support of latest album, Sell Your Soul.

A demonic, organ-playing lothario priest, a skull-headed slap bass, a skin-pounding zombie and a wailing psycho covered in tattoos — What's not to like about The Creepshow?

After a rollicking six-week European tour, an appearance at The Edge's Next Big Thing concert series at Lee's Palace last month and a current summer sojourn across North America, new fans both home and abroad would agree. Songs like Creatures Of The Night and Zombies Ate Her Brain off their album Sell Your Soul! feature funeral dirge keyboards and amped up chords set to Stoker-esque lyrics, and has made the Burlington, Ont.-quartet into what is arguably Canada's premier psychobilly export.

"It was pretty mind blowing to hear people in Hungary singing along. Just to think that people have the CD from that far away," says Sarah Blackwood — currently filling in as front woman for elder sister and band co-founder Jen, who recently gave birth to a nine-and-a-half pound baby girl. "They've had a hardcore psychobilly scene over there for a long time, so we were worried about what they would think of us. But they loved us. It was definitely the best experience of my life and it was the first time I've ever toured, so why not go to Europe for six weeks?" 

The Creepshow started in 2005 as the pet project of Jen "Hellcat" Blackwood and ex-Alexisonfire tour manager Sean "Sickboy" McNab. The pair was looking to break out of the hum-drum, suburban pop-punk nursery of the Southern Ontario scene, and it was Blackwood's suggestion to add the ghastly outfits and personas to enhance the show.

"The idea was to have not just songs, but this show that people would love to go watch," says Sarah, 26. "To have a show with a horror theme with zombies, skulls and monsters, and how can you not have fun doing that? My sister is really creative with drawing, design and artwork and she wanted to bring that to the stage." 

You might surmise, however, that The Creepshow's macabre roots and DIY spirit go back further than that. Rewind to the Blackwood sisters' tween years, when the pair used to burn the candle at both ends indulging their ghoulish creative muse.

"I remember Hellcat and I staying up all night, building things like the Freddy house from Nightmare On Elm Street 3 out of Popsicle sticks," Sarah laughs. "Eventually, when it was finished, she left it at the foot of my bed with a small light beside it. It was kind of creepy. I think she did it on purpose."

Brian Towie/Metro Toronto

see it live ...
  • The Creepshow plays the Bovine Sex Club Saturday. 

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