Once Loved’s Molotov Kyle on Molotov Smile, and a Weekend of St. John’s Reunions
It’s come home week for St. John’s punk rock with Once Loved making a return tonight (Thursday, September 24th), and Friday night (September 25th) with fellow local alumni Molotov Smile who are celebrating their 20th anniversary with an additional closure on Saturday September 26th. It’s a three night reunion sprint taking place under the roof of CBTG’s, and will likely prove good for the heart, and bad for the liver.
Molotov Smile originally formed in 1995 heading a boom of Newfoundland flavoured skate punk that left a lasting impression on the St. John’s music scene. They reformed in 2003 in Calgary, AB following their members relocation, and now come home to mark their 20th anniversary with a stacked weekend on the deck.
It may not be the 20 year mark for Once Loved, but their sound certainly celebrated a spirit ingrained in each of their lineup as they cut their teeth in the very same stomping grounds Molotov Smile helped build for them, and their first bands in the late 90’s/early 00’s. Once Loved kept that vigor alive years later, and who better to join in on the family reunion festivities of punk rock past?
We caught up with Once Loved vocalist Kyle Hynes before his flight home from Ontario to pick his brain on the influence of Molotov Smile, and to find out what Once Loved may have in store for their weekend in St. John’s.
Can you remember the first time you saw Molotov Smile play?
Kyle: I actually don’t remember the first time I saw Molotov smile. Maybe it was at peace-a-chord in the late nineties. 97-98 maybe? I do remember grabbing their 7″ at the Outer Limits in Torbay though. I think my favourite show from Molotov Smile was seeing them open for GOB… They kicked so much ass.
Why are Molotov Smile are so important to you, and to Newfoundland punk in general?
Molotov Smile are so important to me because they’ve always been so consistent, kinda like a speeding locomotive strapped with explosives. All of their releases are great and with a few line up changes here and there they always stay amazing. They have to be the longest running punk band in Newfoundlands history… That’s something to be fucking proud of.
You’re playing this weekend with Once Loved, the band you actively fronted before relocating to Ontario. How did this come about? Was it purposely arranged to coincide with the Molotov Smile shows?
Yeah, our guitarist Jon called me up and said that Ian Newton was having Molotov Smile come back to St. John’s to play a few shows and he’d love for us to play. So with his help and most of our band being available we said let’s do it. I haven’t seen Molotov smile play in over 10 years so I’m really stoked.
Once Loved always felt to me that it encapsulated a certain time and place in the St. John’s punk scene, and featured a lineup of folks who still had a passion for the music long after many of your peers faded away from the scene. What does Once Loved represent for you?
Once Loved to me was trying to showcase and emulate some of the sounds and influences of a lot of the St. John’s bands we grew up playing in and going to see. I kind of looked at us and thought of our old bands and others bands as being “once loved”. The whole thing is nothing more than a tribute to those things in a mish-mash sense.
Besides the shows, what’s the biggest thing you’re looking forward to while visiting home?
Maybe an apple flip and a box of beer from the store.
What can people expect from the Once Loved gig this Thursday, and Friday (with Molotov Smile)? Any big surprises in store?
Yeah, we never jam with this band so it’s hard to have too many surprises. But that’s how we have ALWAYS been. But we’ll try our best to make it fun for anyone able to come out. There will be some surprise songs for sure…