Just a brief aside before the review: the Final Fantasy show tonight has been cancelled due to Owen Pallett having a serious flu. This makes me incredibly sad, as it was the show in this stretch I was most looking forward to... :(
I hope he gets better soon and is able to reschedule... and on a day when I have no other show!
But anyway, on to the matter at hand:
There are two interesting things about my little 5 day stretch (of 4 shows, now). One is they're all in different venues. Tonight was the newly renovated Plaza Club, renamed The Venue, which is a ridiculously silly name. They've opened it up a bit more, especially downstairs, but the awkward general shape is still there -- it still feels like you're inside a ship -- and the sound is only slightly better than it was. The stage got a much needed overhaul, though. It's much bigger with better lights and a pretty nifty LED screen along the back. It's an improvement over the old Plaza Club, but it's still kind of a sub-par venue. It's good enough, but with some of the other, excellent, venues in the town, it's like eating at McDonald's when there is a Cafe Crêpe across the street.
The other interesting thing is the wide variety of music. Sure, they're all Canadian, and would all fit under the "indie" umbrella, but the bands sounds were about at the opposite end of the musical spectrum as last nights lineup. First up was Basketball, who I knew nothing about before the show. And I wish that were still the case. The best way to describe them would be Tribal Electronica, and they started out okay, but by the end it kind of devolved into pretentious noise, with all songs sounding... kinda similar. They had decent energy, with the lead singer jumping into the crowd a few times to sing and all three members jumping around switching instruments through most of the set, but were most certainly nothing I'm in a hurry to hear again.
Finally around 11, Holy Fuck hit the stage and... wow. They may be an electronica band, but this was no simple DJ set. They don't use any fancy tricks -- like looping, splicing or programming anything -- so everything was done live with the help of drums, a guitar, and two tables full of keyboards and other miscellaneous instruments... as well as non-instruments, like a 35mm film synchronizer. Having the show done this way, you almost get the sense that no two Holy Fuck shows will ever be alike. Sure, the songs themselves will always be the same, but the subtle nuances of them will always shift and change, just by the very nature of how they play live shows.
They went for a solid hour or so, just rocking out with limited breaks between the songs and not much by way of stage banter -- only speaking to us twice, to thank us and that sort of thing -- but they more than made up for it with the amount of energy they put into playing; an energy that overflowed off the stage and got damn near everyone in the place moving. They were less a band a more a force of nature. Case in point, they ended the main set with Lovely Allen, which was indescribably amazing, and had had everyone jumping. I would have been completely satisfied had they ended the night there, but they came back out for a couple more, leaving our already blown minds steaming piles of goo all over the Venue floor.
Simply put, I can not wait to have the chance to see Holy Fuck live again.
(also, I managed to snag a copy of that creepy-as-fuck poster for my ever expanding poster wall. huzzah!)
I will leave you with proof. This video was not mine, I take no credit for it other than finding it on the YouTubes and posting it here: