We can play all 71 of our songs in 23 minutes, so beat that!" announces Curt Christensen, lead vocalist of local punk rock band Gudenpist.
Though the 25-year-old leader admits his calculations might be slightly off, the energy and bravado behind his boast are genuine. The band's metal and punk influences combine into an original "punk funk" sound that focuses on keeping the energy high at their shows. Their main impetus is to build momentum, both onstage and in the mosh pit.
"We don't want too much dead air time between our songs," explains Ryan Delnick, the band's bassist. "If we keep it going it keeps the crowd going."
Gudenpist has been keeping their crowds going since their first show in July 2005 at the Castle Pub. Sponsored by the Calgary Beer Core (CBC), the show lined up established bands with emerging groups. The CBC describe themselves on their MySpace page as a local collective of "hardcore kids, punks, metal heads, skaters and the likes [sic]" dedicated to fostering the local punk rock/metal scene. CBC shows thrive on the energy created by the bands and circulated through the crowd, but sometimes bands need to build a following before they can start gathering speed.
"The first time we played the Castle, everyone just kind of stood around watching us," says Mike Courtney, the band's drummer. "The last time we were there, the crowd was chanting our name for more."
Gudenpist built their fan base over the last year and a half by playing shows with other bands in the CBC. After releasing two EPs this past year, the band had the support to record a longer album, abandoning their credo of only playing their music in short spurts.
Gudenpist will launch their first full-length album, Dr. Good and Mr. Pist at the Stetson Mar., 17, playing along with Seven Deadly Sins and The Piss-offs. While the album boasts a longer run-time than their previous work, the band promises to keep the music coming fast and furious at their live shows. They often finish their set before the crowd is through with them.
"We get that a lot," says Delnick. "We'll finish a set and the crowd goes, 'Oh, one more, do one more!'"
Curt Christensen prefers to plow through, adding, "I like playing lots of songs in a row because my head's usually pounding so hard that I just want to get it over with. In the last show, I got nailed in the face with a microphone, and I lost a chunk off the top of one of my teeth. It took two weeks for the sensitivity to come back."
That incident isn't the only orthodontic crisis the band has faced. Gudenpist's members share a bond that runs deeper than a root canal.
The band mates' experiences in the chair serve as a source of camaraderie, but also as inspiration for their metal-edged punk, with songs such as "Novacaine" and "He's Pissed Off and He's Pulling Teeth." While Gudenpist draws on their collective dental histories as material, the subject matter of their new album runs the gamut from shisha to Oompa Loompas, veering away from social issues or loaded manifestos.
"We don't try to send a message or anything like that," Justin Courtney explains.
"We're not trying to be a crazy political band," Delnick adds. "We're just trying to have fun."