The Montreal infringement Festival kicked off last night at the Rusty Shuttle on St. Laurent Blvd, a truly underground festival with some amazing talent played to a full room. Some beautiful renditions in 10 minute sound bytes. The event was hosted by famous American comic Josh Smith, setting the stage. His short intro act touched on issues of race in send up, a sweet truth telling in seminal comedy. The night began with a dramatic/participatory art installation, where people linking arms in a circle beat a silver gong to the industrial goddess chanting “O, my God”. An art nouveau offering. A truly beautiful folk rock presentation by Alexander was followed by Vincent playing New Age classical/folk/rock en francais guitar, some sweet and rough sunshine. Antoine played electric rock and roll ukulele and sang, has to be seen to be believed. The next act introduced as Derek, This Writer suspects was Kasai Dear with political spoken word poetry, “Put That Away” was in honour of Donald Trump, the 45th President of the United States, a fantastical performance. Jay Manafest presented a truly innovative rap performance playing off of election politics, debt and “basic people”. “Suzi” (sorry for this, I did not quite get her name) was a sweet send up of gender politics and popular rock songs on an electric ukekele. Sound effects like a kazoo and renditions of “Let’s do it like they do it on the discovery channel”, a sweet and sexy act. Noted Painter and performance artist, Alex Cuellar, did stand up, handing out $1,000 bills in a “I’ll pay you to be me, today” riff (no it was not real money, but wouldn’t it be scary and rather exciting if it was?) I heard the next act as “Barb” Camilli, sort of an electric guitar Ediaf Piaf, shadow music and her first performance. Donovan King, the organizer and performance artist introduced “What the Fringe”, reading a letter to Dear Capitalism. The innovative art installation Cher Captialisme is his creation, a place where you can write a letter or create a work of art sharing your feelings, experiences, humor in poverty about the capitalist system. PJ/DJ is an innovation with a disabled performance artist in a wheelchair and his friend, an “interpreter” in Slavic and English. Maxine played and sang a sad song en francais on electric guitar. Carrie read some poetry in French and English with a guitar playing in the background. Niko is a punk rock classic on electric guitar, “We’re all going to be losing our skin” and a Bob Marley cover that began slow and then snapped into punk. Fallen Angel Dillon of the golden halo played and sang to electric guitar. “One day we will be free”. Stay Tuned . . .