Blues duo fills full band sound

Harpoonist and the Axe Murderer perform at Diners Rendezvous in Nanaimo

Blues duo Harpoonist and the Axe Murderer decided early on to limit their sound to what they could play between them.

It turned out that choice wasn’t limiting at all.

Shawn Hall provides vocals and harp (or harmonica for listeners new to blues lingo) while Matthew Rogers manages to simultaneously play the drums and guitar with coordination often seen in novelty acts.

The musicians use no programming, pre-recording or looping, despite knowing all the tricks of the trade through their work as studio engineers and producers.

Hall was just 12 and living in Toronto when his grandmother gave him his first harmonica and a book called Harmonica for the Musically Hopeless. On the other side of the country, Rogers was falling in love with the guitar and spellbound by his summer camp counsellor who could play Under the Bridge.

As adults, the two met during a recording session for a radio jingle. Between takes, they discussed working together and the duo was born.

The duo performs at Diners Rendezvous June 3. Tickets $20. Please call 250-740-1133.