Athlete, November 13, Richards on Richards

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Vancouver, Perhaps my final show of the year and my first visit to the legendary Richards on Richards. I gotta say, for what Vancouver lacks in decent shows, they definitely make up for it in nice looking venues. I expected RNR to be a large dingy venue, much like the Phoenix in Toronto. I was pleasantly surprised to find a well maintained venue with great sightlines (floor and balcony) and a unique layout. The stage is tucked away into a corner with plenty of room for people who want to stand/dance/sway or just sit and talk. We got there in time to catch the last few song of the opening act The Mohawk Lodge. They sounded okay, typical Canadian indie rock. They had a cool looking t-shirt on the cheap so I picked one up.

I gotta give props to opening acts man. For the fans that are just there to watch the headliner, most come in with the preconviced notion that the opener isn’t that good and just talk loud and don’t pay attention when the openers are playing, as was the case with The Mohawk Lodge. Didn’t seem to faze them though.

After a riduculously long 40 minute sound check, the young lads from Athlete sauntered onto stage (side note, I think a ‘roadie’ mini game in Gutar Hero or Rock Band would be cool, sound check all the instruments within a time limit) and busted open with ‘Tokyo’. Great tune too get the crowd primed. I’m not a big fan of their latest album, it sounds like alot of pop rock being released nowadays (*cough* Keane *cough* Coldplay). It’s tough not to assume bands go this route in order to sell records as opposed to playing what they want to play. ‘Vehicle and Animals’ however, was fantastic as it did have a unique sound for it’s time. In particular I was looking forward to hearing ‘El Salvador’ but instead got ‘You Got the Style’ and ‘Vehicle and Animals’ which was still nice. The 600+ crowd was well into the entire show and singers onstage bono-esque antics, which he manged to pull off considering the stage was probably only 10ft x 10ft.

Despite Athlete recently releasing a new album, it was nice to get a mix of all their entire catalogue throughout the set.

Oh, and the drummer looks like Kevin Smith


Setlist-ish (I’m going off memory here):

You Got the Style
Airport Disco
Yesterday Threw Everything at Me
Best Not to Think About it
Half Light
It’s Not Your Fault
Shake Those Windows
Vehicles and Animals
24 Hours

The Go! Team, November 1, Phoenix

Posted on by Ricky in Concerts, Everything | 1 Comment

Toronto – The Go Team. What can you say about them..really? I guess the main ingredient when going to a Go! Team concert is fun. These guys put on a really fun song. In case you don’t know who the go team is, they are a six piece band from England, consisting of two drummers, and some people who play other instruments. The lead singer is some black girl named Ninja, and they also have two japanese people in the band. I don’t know why I mentioned that. What do they sound like? Think happy, and think early 80s saturday morning cartoon theme songs. It is kind hard to describe their sound, its really a mish mash of stuff. Here’s a youtube video of their song Ladyflash:

The show was at the Phoenix, which I have probably ranted before. Actually sooner then later, I will post a ‘Toronto Concert Venue Review’ post or something. The crowd was pretty ramped up for this band, I was disappointed to find out Spiral Beach opened, since I like that band. I might have even caught them if I did not have a soccer game before hand. Funny thing, as I was lining up at the door, the girl in front of me asked the security guard why they always put the 19 and over wrist band on the right hand. He replies ‘its so if we see a wristband on the left hand, we know something fishy is going on.’ Sure enough, as I was entering the adults only section of the phoenix, there was a girl, trying to get in with the wrist band on her left hand. BUSTED. So a lesson to all you underage kids. if you are going to try to get in the drinking zone, pay attention to details.

It always amuses me when I am walking around and I see teenagers wearing like 100 dollar hoodies and 200 dollar jeans. I’m like..damn where the hell do they get that money from?

Anyways, the Go! Team came on around 10:30. Sweet. No video screen (like the show from two years ago), but it was replaced by the two drums having different colored lamps on it. The team immediately started off with some song off the first album. Man, let me tell you something. That girl Ninja can GO. I mean, she can dance for the entire hour and not shed a sweat. The entire band seemed into it, I guess it was the last show of the tour so they gave it their all. However, the star of the show was clearly this lead singer. Man she got moves, and grooves. They aint lying when they say black peeps got them rhythms.

The set consisted of songs off both the new and old albums, I would give you song titles, but you can pretty much just look up the track listings and it’ll provide the same effect. I honestly don’t think this band could put on a band show, their music is just so damn happy feely and they got that “cute” stage presence. The set ended with the double punch of LadyFlash/Huddle Formation before the encore introduced the crowd to new album tune do it right and some other song whos title escapes me.

All in all, excellent show and the crowd was really into it, which pleases me.


CD Review – Julie Doiron / Woke Myself Up (2007)

Posted on by Wade in Albums, Concerts, Everything | 1 Comment


Growing up on the east coast, Eric’s Trip (1990 – 1996) is a bit of an institution. Julie Doiron (bass, guitar, vocals) was one of the original members of this Moncton based, Sonic Youth and Dinosaur Jr., influenced band. I remember seeing quite a few Eric’s Trip t-shirts when I was in high school but remained unaware of their east coast/Canadian cult status at the time. Yah, the cool kids definitely knew about Eric’s Trip. I did not. They also gained some serious points for being the first Canadian band signed to Sub Pop in the early 90’s.

Eric’s Trip is Julie Doirons’ backing band on “Woke Myself Up”. After my first listen I classified this CD as a pretty good wood, wires and whisky CD with a slightly lo-fi rock feel, especially on the track Don’t Wannabe/Liked By You. The rest of the CD is pretty standard singer songwriter tracks, but lyrically the songs are different. I feel like they were written by a 30 year old woman who is still attending high school. She has all the typical high school problems with love and friends, but she faces each of them with a ‘big deal, I’m still awesome’ attitude because she has experience under her belt.

One of the reasons I picked this up was because of her Polaris Music Prize nomination earlier this year. I don’t hear anything ground breaking on this CD that would have won her this prize, but it is still worth a listen.

I also picked it up because Julie lives in Sackville, NB. For those who don’t know, Sackville is the trucker hat a la 2001 of New Brunswick. It’s a cool spot. Sackville is a very important place in New Brunswick because to most people, the letters NB simply represent the province you need to drive through to get to Halifax (or PEI).

New Pornographers, Phoenix, October 21

Posted on by Ricky in Concerts, Everything | Leave a comment

Toronto – Cottages are always fun, specially when you get in some good drink gaming, boating, canoing and fishing actions in. So to say I was tired before I went to the New Pornographers show at the Phoenix was an understatement. I was exhausted. A big part of me wanted to just be all ‘fuck it’ and go home and chill. But then again, I figure one of the reasons why i moved to Toronto was so I could see cool shows, so .. yea i went.

The Phoenix was packed Sunday night and it is surprisingly hot here, so it was a nice hot sweaty crowd. I was actually happy that I had not showered at the cottage, as now , at least, I can probably out stink anyone else in this crowd. I caught the last two song of Emma Pollock’s set, and I was glad, as she played the two songs I like off the album. After a short delay between set, the bright luminous ‘NEW PORNOGRAPHERS’ logo started flashing and the gang went on. Holy smokes it was the entire gang of them. Bejar AND Neko Case. Instantly, this was a better show then the previous pornos show.

I would say a majority of the set consisted of material from their new album – Challengers, and that’s good, since I like that album a lot. Some classic tunes they played included ‘Mass Romantic’, ‘From Blown Speakers’, ‘Spanish Techno’ and ‘Slow decent..’. Its funny, despite the fact that most people assume Newman is the leader and driving force behind the Pornos, it was so obvious that Dan Bejar was the more popular character. I assume this was how it was in high school, were Newman was the guy who puts in all the hard work and stuff, then Bejar would drunkenly jump into the room, do something stupid, and gets all the ladies..meanwhile Neko Case would be standing in the corner smoking a cigarette and shaking her head.

The new songs – Myriad Harbor, Challengers, etc all sound really excellent live and if you have not acquired the album, I highly suggest it. All in all, I found the concert to be excellent. The crowd was into it, and they played a lot of new stuff with some classic stuff. Also, halfway thru the set, these two midget woman pushed their way into the middle of the crowd to try and get a better view. I mean, they were short, and looked mean, and I was thinking they can be villains in the next Bond movie.

Oh yea, Neko Case can sing really well.