Brody Dalle on stage at a headline show at Canadian Music Week 2014 – photo Brian Banks
Who: Brody Dalle with Kennedy Cult and The Box Tiger
When: Wednesday, 7 May 2014
Where: Horseshoe Tavern, Toronto
In One Word: Control
People often talk about “energy” at concerts, but energy only works well when it is controlled and directed: tonight was a masterclass in harnessing and delivering true live music energy, with all three bands in total control.
Powering up the motor were The Box Tiger. It’s three and a half years since I first saw them live: they’ve grown a lot in that time, and after some line-up changes, gigging, and doing all the usual things hardworking indie bands do, have honed their craft. Tonight Sonia Sturino and The Box Tiger brought it. They more than held their own in the spotlight, and were warmly received by a capacity crowd, who were of course, all here for the headliner Brody Dalle at one of the top-billed gigs of Canadian Music Week 2014. As Sturino leaned into the microphone, she was composed and fully into delivering her music, racing out the lyric’s to big numbers like “Knives”: the audience were pulled in to close proximity (as noted by guitarist Jordan Stowell), and the kinetic energy began.
Keeping things moving, Kennedy Cult brought the cool with some lovestruck downer pop, filled with dance beats, saxophone tweaks and vacant gazes into the crowd by the lead singer. Kennedy Cult do the cool, affected band well.
Then, right on time at 11pm, Brody Dalle came on stage with her band, amping up the intensity to the max. The pin-up lady of thrash punk, Brody Dalle played a set sprinkled with some of the faster Distillers numbers, a Spinerrette song or two, and songs from her new album Diploid Love. I’ve never seen The Horseshoe packed so tight at the front: a swirling blender of bodies of all sizes, hanging off each other while hanging off every word of Dalle, all eyes crushing on centre stage. The whole thing was over in just shy of an hour. No encore required. No tackiness. Just pure thrash at it’s finest. Brody Dalle in complete control.
© Brian Banks, Editor, Music Vice
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