Sunday, January 28, 2007
Can I get a witness?
This is a little perfunctory, as grad school and the like have yet to release its hellish grip on my life, but I wanted to mention that I recently caught the CFRU anniversary bash, or, as I prefer to think of it, the most recent Constantines show in Guelph. They began (again?) with the underwhelming-to-me "Tank Commander," but I seem to be the only one who thinks that the end of Shine a Light was the worst part of the band's discography.

Luckily, they were on their customary fine form (best live band in Canada, and don't give me any Arcade Fire guff), and the two new songs they played were easily up to the standards of their best material. One of the nice things about seeing them live is that they get a chance to transform tracks from Tournament of Hearts. It's their best album because for the first time Constantines really engage with the difference between playing live and making an album, and they want to fully explore the possibility of the latter, which also means Tournament of Hearts is their least-obvious record to date (although fans howl for "Hotline Operator" or "Draw Us Lines" just as much as they do for "Young Lions" or "Arizona"). But live they trade subtlety and range for brawn and excitement; "Lizaveta" feels about as heavy as Black Sabbath, and Steve Lambke's "Thieves" goes from quietly jazzy on disc to the highest of high octane.

Not that the set didn't have quieter moments, although those mostly came from the first album; more importantly, they played "Soon Enough" and "On to You" (the two hidden gems in a pretty ridiculously rich catalog), when four guys yelled out "Young offenders!" after "Young Lions" the band indulged them, and they always play well in their old home of Guelph. I could watch these guys every week.

Setlist:
Tank Commander
Working Full-Time
No Ecstasy
Hotline Operator
Young Lions
Young Offenders
Soon Enough
Showers of Stones*
Subdomestic
On to You
Credit River*
Arizona
Thieves
Lizaveta
Shine a Light
Nighttime/Anytime (It's Alright)

Encore:
Draw Us Lines
Hyacinth Blues
7 AM


Posted by Ian on Sunday, January 28, 2007 at 4:09 PM |

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The FunkyFunky 7 Are:
A group of kids with WAY too much time on their hands.
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