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My Gay Toronto - Bellini's 8 1/2

Mouth Congress

by DREW Rowsome & PAUL BELLINI

The big news in the rock world is that Guns n' Roses are reuniting for a tour. The big news in the pop world is that the Spice Girls are not reuniting. The big news in the gay punk world is that Mouth Congress is reuniting for one show (so far) only.

As the official press release (conveniently leaving out rumours of repeated rehab, warring diva egos, and sexual debauchery with groupies and casual fans alike) goes,

Mouth Congress, a reference to oral sex found in the Sir Richard Burton translation of the Kama Sutra, was founded in 1984 when Paul Bellini rented a beatbox from Long & McQuade so he and Scott Thompson could jam around the big freezer in their basement.

An openly gay punk band at a time when no other existed, Paul and Scott spent a year writing songs before their first gig, opening for Bruce McCulloch at The Rivoli. Seemingly destined for greatness, Mouth Congress played gigs around Toronto building a cult following.

They cut a demo in 1986, which was never released due to Thompson’s increasing success with The Kids in the Hall, and Mouth Congress quietly became a Queen Street urban legend.

The group was known for raucous live show and managed to produce an astounding 647 recordings, most of which Bellini has compiled at mouthcongress.bandcamp.com

While Mouth Congress sat idle, licking its lips in anticipation of being re-unleashed, Thompson went on to great success as a comedian/actor in The Kids in the HallStar TrekThe Larry Sanders ShowHannibal, and an unforgettable turn in Ross Petty's pantomime Beauty and the Beast. Bellini applied his comic genius to The Kids in the HallThis Hour Has 22 Minutes, many film and television parts (if you missed Masculathon, seek it out), and teaching comedy, all while writing for fab magazine (collected in book form as The fab Columns) and now MyGayToronto.com. How this wealth of comedic, theatrical and musical experience will enhance what already promises to be a stellar reunion just adds more to the anticipation.

Mouth Congress reunites on Sun, Feb 21 8:30pm at The Rivoli, 332 Queen St W. mouthcongress.bandcamp.com



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