Concert Review: Wild Nothing, February 17th, Wrongbar

Toronto – In a time where every up and coming buzz band is intent on creating abstract hookless unlistenable chill wave tracks, it has been refreshing to watch Wild Nothing‘s ascension to indie darlings. Undoubtedly influenced by the jangly hook laden melodies of new wave acts such as The Smiths, Wild Nothing has been riding a wave of momentum from their debut album Gemini – an album brimming with catchy dreamy choruses and an evocative longing sound that those eighties English bands had previously mastered. Ready and willing to take on the world, Wild Nothing took their act to a sold out Wrongbar on a rigid Thursday night and to quote the infamous Pete Doherty ” the world kicked back, a lot fucking harder now”.

Taking the stage at 11:30pm after a solid Abe Vigoda set, the band took the tiny Wrongbar stage to a great ovation. The ovation soon dimmed as the band spent most of their set battling their equipment. I’m not sure whether it was the equipment or the sound guy, but the band seemed mired in frustration the entire hour they were on, at one point of the set stopping a song completely halfway through and then restarting it from scratch. Any previous momentum gained by the band came to a complete halt at this point and the band then had to add crowd indifference alongside the sound guy to their list of problems. Sound problems aside, the band seemed content to let their music do the talking, rarely engaging the crowd besides the obligatory thank you remarks. This type of tactic might have worked in any other venue, but the Wrongbar is extremely small and intimate. The barely raised stage just begs for audience interactions and the lack of this seemed to once again dim the bands performance.

Having said all that, the songs, when working, sounded as good live as it did on album. Shimmering guitars weaved in and out of melodic choruses and songs such as Summer Holiday and Chinatown did make me feel glad I was able to make this show.

With all the technical difficulties and stage show drama (or lack thereof), it would be hard to classify this as a good show. However, good music is good music and everyone has bad days so I would be more than willing to check them out again the next time they are in town. You should too.

Wild Nothing – Summer Holiday by Surfing on Steam

Posted on by Ricky in Concerts

About Ricky

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