Updated: May 26
By Harry Myles
On Saturday, April 25th at 2:30 pm, a community post from BuzzFeed broke the news about the status of Toronto band Corn Puffians after publishing an article titled, "Toronto Band Breaks Up After Explosive Argument Caught On Camera."
UPDATE: BuzzFeed has since deleted the post. Corn Puff Records has obtained the full version with its original contents which can be read below:
Toronto Band Breaks Up After Explosive Argument Caught On Camera
Featuring Toronto darlings like Jay McCarrol of Nirvanna the Band the Show, Feurd and Frankie of the Elwins, and Luke Lalonde of Born Ruffians, a Toronto-based charity event ended on a shocking note following the headlining set from Corn Puffians.
The Livestream Festival Ended on a Shocking Note
On Saturday, April 18, Toronto label Corn Puff Records organized a livestream music festival for charity hosted by Corn Puffians members Joey Litvak (frontman), Noa Bonen (bass), and Maia Harris (percussion). The four and a half-hour festival also featured Corn Puff Records signees McKinnon, Amelia Ear Heart’s Sonic Aviary, and A Good Band, along with local producer Pyari, pop-punk band Glass Cactus, Jay McCarrol of Nirvanna the Band the Show, Feurd and Frankie of the Elwins, and Luke Lalonde of Born Ruffians.
Who Are Corn Puffians?
Corn Puffians are a Toronto-based Born Ruffians post-coverband, with the “post-cover” part meaning they reinterpret Born Ruffians songs in new and creative ways. The band prided themselves on being the first-ever “post-coverband,” but now it seems like Litvak was the only one who supported the idea. Throughout the festival, he tried to explain the "post-cover" to various performers while Noa sat quietly annoyed beside him. Even some of the viewers were frustrated with Litvak, with user @meme.latifah saying “Put Joey in a casket” after a pretentious "post-cover" rant aimed at Born Ruffians frontman Luke Lalonde.
Corn Puffians and Born Ruffians Collaborated Earlier in the Year for a Video Project:
A Music Video From "The First-Ever Post-Coverband”
They Came, They Covered, They Crumbled...
For their final song, Litvak decided to perform “I Fall in Love Every Night” off of Born Ruffians’ latest album, Juice. Bonen made it clear that the band had not practiced the song, but Litvak claimed that “the people want to hear it.” Bonen walked off-camera in the middle of the messy performance, leaving Litvak and Harris to end the festival without her. Thinking the camera was turned off, Joey chased after Noa, but the camera person hid behind a corner and live-streamed a heated exchange between the band's self-proclaimed frontman and bassist. Noa yelled, “I’m sick of your post-cover bullshit!” while Joey shouted back that he could have done the whole festival without her. Bonen called Litvak an “asshole” before forcibly shoving him aside to get out the door. Litvak turned around, spotted the camera, and shouted “Are you fucking filming right now!” just before the feed cut out. Oof.
Later That Night…
Later that night, Litvak posted an art print of the three band members with the heading “Ceci n’est pas une Corn Puffians”, a reference to René Magritte’s painting The Treachery of Images. Litvak announced that Bonen had been removed from the band, claiming that she “never believed in the vision of Corn Puffians as the first-ever post-cover band; she never really believed in the art of the post-cover at all” and that her departure was “a long time coming.” He concluded his message by announcing Corn Puffians would be taking “an indefinite hiatus.” Talk about drama.
Throughout the festival, Litvak became increasingly agitated over technical difficulties and seemed overly concerned with the Corn Puffians set, sometimes going so far as to ignore the other performers. During Feurd and Frankie's final song, Litvak was visibly seen looking at his phone. Then, during Lalonde’s last song, (an acoustic version of “This Sentence Will Ruin/Save Your Life” adamantly requested by Litvak), Joey emphatically interrupted the performer right before the feed cut out. It looked like Litvak stopped the video on purpose after Lalonde wouldn’t stop, and when the feed returned, Litvak became quite defensive, claiming that Instagram ended the live stream because they went over the one-hour time limit. Without hesitation, he made the executive decision to not wait for Lalonde's return and instead moved on to the Corn Puffians headlining performance. Yikes!
Post-Breakup Comments from Bonen and Harris
Following Litvak's destructive post, Bonen and Harris did not mince words. To start off, Harris, an apparent “neutral” third party between the feuding bassist and guitarist said she feels quite “snubbed and disregarded” over the break-up. Apparently, Maia was not consulted and feels she deserves “an apology for being left out of the decision to disband.” Bonen does not think she “could ever work on something like Corn Puffians again with Joey if he’s gonna act the way he did. He cared more about bringing his concept into the world than treating [his] friends...with respect.” Harris explained that Corn Puffians started as “a fun side project” for her but “it got too serious for Joey” and “the fun got replaced with pressure and stress.” Bonen added that “the whole post-cover thing...is something that’s a lot bigger in [Joey’s] head than in his reality.” Harris pinpoints the root causes of the split to “a collision of Joey’s ego and Noa’s impatience mixed in with a healthy dose of cabin fever” brought on by the COVID-19 quarantine.
That's All, Folks!
Perhaps the greatest irony of all is that the day before the festival and the band's subsequent break-up, Corn Puffians posted a Blockbuster-Inspired art design to their social media with the caption “...unlike the demise of Blockbuster Video, you can count on Corn Puffians to stick around for a long time!”
What's Post for Corn Puffians?
Maybe the band will return renewed and better than ever after their hiatus; however, Harris said she’s “done” with the post-cover concept. She did mention that the trio still have a non-post-cover project that may see the light of day. That being said, for now, the world’s first-ever post-cover band is no more.
Corn Puffians Pose with Born Ruffians frontman Luke Lalonde During Collaborative Project
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