Concert Review: Belle and Sebastian, Massey Hall, October 12

Toronto – Belle and Sebastian at Massey Hall was awesome, as expected. The Scottish band with a back catalog larger then most Hollywood wive’s shoe closet definitely brought their A game last night, resulting in a night of accumulating epicness. The night started off at a mild pace, with the band eager to show off the new songs from Write About Love, perhaps their best album of this decade. I would dare say songs such as I Want The World To Stop and I’m Not Living In The Real World will soon be added to the echelon of very popular B&S songs in short time. Featuring an entire string quartet, the 7 piece band showed off their musicianship throughout the entire night, sounding as sharp as I have ever heard them.

As the night rolled on, new songs paved way for older classics, and before you know it, it was an all out greatest hits show. I feel so blessed this year, to have heard two of my favorite all time songs – James’ Tomorrow and B&S’s Sleep the Clock Around live, and in amazing venues. As you would expect, the crowd response grew accordingly and by the time the encore hit, even parts of the gallery was standing. Belle and Sebastian played a total of 22 songs, but I’m sure we could of been there for another 22 and not a single person would have left.

Here are some other splendid moments:

– Stuart Murdoch asking a fan to apply mascara during Lord Anthony. This was after quite a search in the front row for someone with the proper mascara.

– The angry, angry middle age man in the first row in front of me, who was absolutely enraged that the front area got invaded by young and impressionable people. Enraged to the point he went to security to ask that they be removed, to which the security guy said “the band allowed it”. The man fumed for a few songs, then ended up standing up with his arms cross the rest of the night. Why even bother going to a show, man.

– Stevie Jackson asking the crowd to singalong to new tune I’m Not Living In The Real World in a C, and then a D, then a higher tone, then a lower one.

– The young seven or eight year old girl who went on stage to dance to The Boy With The Arab Strap. Consider that girl a B&S fan for life. I somehow feel compelled to point out that this is probably the peak of this girl’s concert going career.

– The complete awesomeness that was Sleep The Clock Around. Anytime you can listen to one of your favorite songs live in Massey Hall, you gotta do it. This ALMOST beats dancing to Sleep The Clock Around against a perfect sunset at Coachella in 2004. Almost.

– They played Legal Man, which was a non album single 2000. Always wonderful when a band plays a somewhat obscure song that you know at a show.

In short, the Belle & Sebastian concert was quite a night to remember. Stuart Murdoch is a great front man, with the appropriate amount of dry humor and of course, the Stuart Dance. The band was crisp and the set list had a chunk of classics. Sure, everyone had a list of songs they wanted to hear, and surely some of these songs were not played. Considering the band has released 8 albums and a b-sides double album, it was bound to happen. Now the hard part is waiting for them to return. I’ll be there.

Set List:
Read The Blessed Pages
Write About Love
Dylan In The Movies
I’m Not Living In The Real World
The Loneliness of a Middle Distance Runner
I Want The World To Stop
Lord Anthony
Sukie In The Graveyard
You Really Got Me (The Kinks cover)
Piazza, New York Catcher
I Didn’t See It Coming
I’m A Cuckoo
(I Believe In) Travelin’ Light
Dog On Wheels
The Boy With The Arab Strap
Legal Man
Simple Things
Sleep The Clock Around
This Is Just A Modern Rock Song (err, 1 minute of)
Judy and the Dream of Horses
Me and the Major

08 – Belle and Sebastian – I Want The World To Stop by statemagazine

Posted on by Ricky in Concerts, Everything

About Ricky

Britpop lovin Chinaman, consumer of all things irrelevant. Toronto Raptors fan.