The oral history of Slow's legendary Expo '86 show

Tom Anselmi and Stephen Hamm of the Vancouver punk band Slow look back at one of their craziest shows ever, at Expo '86.
(Courtesy of Stephen Hamm)

Sometimes, it can be really fun to not know what to expect. Like when you go to see a show after your friends tell you how awesome the band is, but it's not until you see them up close that you realize what you're in for. 

Slow is a Vancouver punk band from the '80s. They broke up after only three years, but people are still talking about their live shows. That may have to do with the public drunkenness and occasional nudity, but there was an energy and truth to the music that a lot of fans couldn't shake. That's why they're so excited that, after 30 years, Slow is getting back together. 

For three nights, the band is playing in Vancouver with plans to travel across the country in 2018. Elliott Lefko worked as their promoter back in the day. He went on to work with bands like Nirvana, Red Hot Chili Peppers and Nick Cave. He's been known to help many Canadian bands make it in the U.S. and when Lefko says that things get "upside down" with Slow, there is no better example than what happened on Aug. 4, 1986. 

The band was invited to play a showcase at Expo '86, a world's fair that was meant to put Vancouver on the map. Slow couldn't really understand why an anti-establishment punk band was invited. Today, Slow members Tom Anselmi and Stephen Hamm will tell you all about that legendary Expo show. 

For more on Slow, click the related link below. 

— Produced by Elaine Chau and Jennifer Van Evra


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