Anticipation has been building globally since rumours began in late 2014 about Ride’s reformation and rumblings about a major tour. Sometimes these “rumblings” are exercises in mass-wishful thinking from fans hungry for the chance to see an iconic, favourite band who were thought to be disbanded and part of our collective rosy history. But not this time. This time, in a wave that crashed from shore to shore in the U.K. , U.S. and Canada, Ride’s world tour announcement was followed up successfully with a list of extensive dates beautifully rolled out by Creation Records and a newly invigorated media tired of non-news about non-music for too long. A building covering poster was photographed by Time Out Barcelona and sent around the world, signalling that the time had finally come to get really, really excited for Spring and Summer 2015.

We’ve watched the excitement build via friends on social media who’ve caught some of the tour in Glasgow, Manchester, London and Amsterdam (people who know their music) and the message has been uniformly, unusually positive as Ride has delivered time and time again in solid performances. Ride has been working it, creating memorable evenings that have cemented the collective resolve that the 90’s glory days are well worth reliving, and in chorus with other important bands like Slowdive, The Jesus and Mary Chain, Primal Scream, and Swervedriver touring again, we are lucky enough to be in a 90’s renaissance. Ride’s world tour has begun and if you have any desire to see this band, you’d better find a way by any means necessary to get yourself to one of the dates.  Ride’s first leg beginning May 22 hit major cities in the U.K. and Europe: Glasgow, Manchester, London, Amsterdam, Paris; and a stop at Primavera Fest in Barcelona. They’ve made their way through Brooklyn and Toronto like a beautiful, shimmering storm and hit New York tonight before heading back to the UK and world music festival circuit all summer. After barely a break, Ride will be back to cover the major music cities in the US northeast in mid September.

We attended the Toronto show last night at The Danforth Music Hall, the venue we are touting to anyone who’ll listen (at the pub before, and after the show) as the very best our city currently has to offer for fans & photographers alike. It is impossible to find a bad time or a bad sight line at this spot, our local gem. The place was packed, wall to wall, with true blue fans who found room to sway and politely dance in our personal space (Canadian-style) while inside, many of us were rioting and lit up from within as happens when everything just clicks in an impossibly perfect way. As you’ve no doubt seen if you’re following this tour, one massive banner hung across the back of the stage, with one perfect word in white block text on a black background: RIDE. And it was a ride. “Vapour Trail” “Chelsea Girl” “Polar Bear” “Dreams Burn Down”. A nonstop roller coaster of music that flowed seamlessly for 90 minutes almost without the band seeming to pause for breath. A high point was when they announced “This is our last song of the night”  (Drive Blind) to which an audience member bellowed “NO IT ISN’T!” in a funny violation of the social contract that stipulates that we all pretend that encores aren’t expected and customary in the game we play together. “Drive Blind”  melted into its minutes-long extended riff complete with an impressive lighting display that signaled Ride would not even be leaving the stage for a while yet.

By Jacqueline Howell. Photos by Dave MacIntyre