New venue Turbo Haüs blasts off

Local punks/heavy rockers Trigger Effect christen their new show space, Turbo Haüs, tomorrow night, but Cult MTL readers get a sneak peek today at the venue and its wicked artwork by En Masse.


L to R: Patrick Bennett, Jordan Brown, Mike Niro, Nick Babeu and Sergio Da Silva of Trigger Effect and Turbo Haüs. Photos by Katie Green

If you can’t find a decent venue to play in Montreal, why not create your own? That’s what Trigger Effect did, and the fruits of their labour will be on display tomorrow night as they inaugurate their brand-new baby, Turbo Haüs.

Over the past decade, the guys in Trigger Effect have spent their fair share of time in dank basements, community centres, strangers’ living rooms and sometimes on stages to bring their heavy rock to the masses, here and abroad. It was their time spent in Europe, though, that informed their sensibilities about what they wanted out of a live show — really, just to be treated well by promoters, to have all the necessary equipment and to have an enthusiastic audience. Jointly owned by all members of the band under their company name, Turbo Machine, Turbo Haüs is meant to serve those purposes.

Tomorrow night marks the beginning of a new era for them as they open the doors to Turbo Haüs with an open house from 5–8 p.m. before USA Out of Vietnam and a very special and awesome secret band take the stage at 10 p.m.(Please note Trigger Effect is not playing.) Cult MTL spoke via email with drummer Mike Niro and frontman Nick Babeu about it.

Tracey Lindeman: Why’d you decide to open this venue?
Trigger Effect: We’ve been thinking about opening a venue for a few years now. When we returned from our last European tour, we were adamant about getting this project off the ground. Unfortunately, we realized that opening our dream venue/community centre was a much bigger endeavour than we could afford. Yet, while we were scrambling to figure out how we could pull this off, our old jam space flooded and we were offered a great deal on a 1,200-square-foot space. Although smaller than what we had planned, we thought it would be a great step in the right direction. So we got to work.

TL: Was there any particular venue(s) you modeled your space/mandate after?
TE: We took our years of touring and basically built the venue that we’d love to play at. Turbo Haüs has a big stage, a powerful P.A., really bad-ass artwork (courtesy of our friends at En Masse — see below), has food and booze, is clean and is the perfect size for the shows we want to go to [capacity’s at about 100].

We’re still in the beginning phases of our Turbo Machine master plan, but we think this is an awesome start, and we’re really excited that Turbo Haüs is ready to launch.

TL: How long have you been working to open this space?
TE: We’ve been working on this in controlled bursts since November. We’ve also been writing, pre-producing, recording and finalizing our new album since October, so we had to work on this in small steps. We’d rehearse all week and build all weekend. Then we stopped to focus on the album in late December, and in mid-January we jumped back into Turbo Haüs mode.

TL: Did you have a venue before? (On Facebook, it says you’re re-opening.)
TE: We used to have shows in our old jam space a few years back. They were crazy and so much fun. They were pretty illegal and eventually got shut down due to some jerks vandalizing the building. So this time we’re doing things right and hoping people will be respectful of all our hard work. We’re getting our permits [including booze and food-serving ones], finding some great partners and taking every precaution we can to make sure we have a legit spot.

TL: Who/what are you looking to book here?
TE: Everything! Concerts, vernissages, afterparties, comedy shows, live theatre, movie screenings, dance parties and stuff we’ve never even heard of. We’re still learning the ropes at this venue game, so we’re going to keep it at one per month for now. But we want to be as diverse as possible — any type of band (not just punk bands) and all types of artists. This is for everyone. ■

Turbo Haüs opens Friday, Feb. 8 with USA Out of Vietnam and special guests. Email turbohausmtl@gmail.com for location. for location info. Doors at 9 p.m., $6


Artwork by En Masse

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