by cheryl santa maria

Fighter/Lover, where have you been all my life? No, really. I think I’m in love.

Thirteen years ago I saved my allowance money and purchased what would become my all-time favourite album: The Downward Spiral by NIN. To this day that album is a permanent resident on my ipod and the CD is always in my car. It oozes sex and self assurance without being cocky. It’s intelligent and it’s groundbreaking, and it is, in my opinion, timeless.


While Fighter/Lover doesn’t mimic the sound of NIN, I find many of the same characteristics in them. There is something evolved about their music. I’m not exactly sure how to describe it, but I would say that Fighter/Lover has an “it” quality about them – a je ne sais quoi, if you will – that puts them above the rest.

Fighter/Lover is a Toronto duo comprised of Howard Golbach and Roey Shemesh. They’ve been performing together since meeting in high school but their current project emerged somewhat recently, out of a collective identity crisis, that prompted them to change their name from Idiots! and to craft a “dirtier” sound, focusing on the blending of acoustic and electronic drum kits.

They describe their music as “dirty/clean, ugly/beautiful [and] sexy/awkward,” but I’d have to disagree with the last point. In my opinion, there is nothing clumsy about this music. It has a “kick ass, take charge” quality to it which makes sense when you consider some of the band’s influences. In addition to countless musicians – one of their favourite albums is Pavement’s Crooked Rain – Fighter/Lover is inspired by the likes of Muhammad Ali, Bruce Lee and the smoking hot Jennifer Connelly.

If you’re going to be in Toronto on November 29th, you can see Fighter/Lover perform live at The Drake Hotel alongside The World Provider and they’re going to be in Brooklyn on January 10th at The Vanishing Point (check out their Myspace and their website for more concert and release dates).

Visit Youtube to watch their video for “Girl From the North Pole” (great song) and click here to purchase their EP on itunes.

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