Concert Review: Wild Flag, October 11, Lee’s Palace

Toronto – Wild Flag are, as the name suggests, pretty wild.  The band is all about creating an atmosphere of rock and roll abandon.  Case in point: when I saw the band at SXSW (in a parking lot across from a Whole Foods), Carrie Brownstein not only kicked her guitar cord loose, but also later slipped and fell while rocking out midsong.  And then got up and continued her scissor kicks throughout the set.  That’s dedication.  That same energy (and of course,  the kicks) was on display during the band’s set at Lee’s Palace.

Musically, Wild Flag are a well oiled machine who have perfected the art of jamming – they know how to let the music stretch out and expand but in a way that never felt overbearing or noodly.  It was the perfect blend of melody, punk fury and psychedelic passages.  Brownstein and fellow singer/guitarist Mary Timony had plenty of opportunity to show off some guitar heroics while Janet Weiss and Rebecca Cole held things down on the drums and keyboards respectively.  Weiss and Cole also offered up lots of great backing vocals that at times almost had a bit of a ’60s girl group vibe.

The great thing about watching Wild Flag live is that even though they’ve all individually been at this for awhile, collectively, they still look like they’re pretty stoked to be playing together.  Basically, they’re having fun and so was the packed crowd.  This sense of fun extended into the encore, where they came out to play a couple of covers, starting with The Misfits’ “She” and then flowing right into The Rolling Stones’ “Beast Of Burden.”  Some unexpected choices, but also totally satisfying, as was the entire show.

Wild Flag – Future Crimes by Music Meds

Posted on by Paul in Concerts