The Gig: Mother Mother (part of Canadian Music Fest 2011)
Where: Phoenix Concert Theatre, Toronto, Ontario
When: 9 March 2011
In One Word: Robotic
Like many music fans attending Canadian Music Fest this week, one of the acts that I was most excited to see was Mother Mother’s performance at the Phoenix. I’ve really been enjoying the pre-release of Eureka, which is set to drop next Tuesday, especially the track “The Stand” which has a really sexy dance groove to it.
However, if there’s one thing I’ve come to learn about shows- is that whether you’re seeing a favourite band or an up-and-comer, every show is a gamble. There is no such thing as a sure ticket, and at tonight’s show lady luck is not doling out any pay-outs.
We arrive during the last two songs of Birds of Tokyo’s set, which is frankly about all that I can take of the Australian band. (I was a little sad to miss one of last year’s NXNE discoveries, local band Whale Tooth’s only performance this week. They played the 9 PM slot). Then, after a 30 minute waiting period, the band of that everyone is here to see tonight takes to the stage.
Mother Mother start the set off with the title track of their last release, O My Heart. When it comes to crowd-pleasers, this song should be a no-brainer- but even with my earplugs out, the applause seems a bit obligatory. Tonight the Vancouver rockers seem robotic as they move through their set that covers a little old ground and some new content too. During the second song, we get a hint of choreography from the band’s two sirens Molly Guldemond and Jasmin Parkin, but overall the band spends more time posing than dancing.
This is in essence, exactly what is disappointing about tonight’s performance. The band’s albums are pretty dynamic with their boy-girl harmonies, and a sound which spans rock, pop, dance, and occasionally hip hop- but live they have awfully low energy for a band that uses so many handclaps in their music. Ultimately, their failure to get excited by their own music makes their sound fall flat. We end up leaving 7 songs into the set and decide to call it a night to get some rest for what is going to be a long weekend.
© Natascha Malta, Music Vice
Pictures of Mother Mother at The Phoenix by Caroline Aksich: