I'm not really sure why, but I was a little on the fence about this show. Not that I didn't want to see Royal Canoe, but it just almost slipped by. But then at the last minute, the day before, Ghostkeeper had to drop out, and when they were replaced by Rococode... well, that tipped the scales a little.
Rococode were great, as usual. The roco-harmonies between Laura and Andrew were super tight and spot on. They started off with the haunting "Dreams" before blasting into "Empire", which always gets stuck in my head and after a few more, they ended their short set with the raucous "Blood", with Johnny Andrews' drumming really driving the song home. I have seen them a few times so far this year, and even though they recently released a two song 7", I am more than eagerly awaiting their full album. But their next show will have to suffice, which is their showcase for the Peak Performance Project next Thursday.
Not long after Royal Canoe hit the stage, which was packed with equipment, including at least guitars, bass, six keyboards, and a drum kit and a half. The stage was so full that when they were switching around, they had to hop off stage and go around. But it wasn't all just for show, as the six members of the band perfectly recreated they unique sound, that you wouldn't think they'd be able to pull off live. Starting with "Soothsayer", their set included some new songs as well, such as the moody "Exodus of the Year". Another new song, "Nightcrawlin'" was also a highlight with Bucky using dual microphones, a regular one, and one for crazy vox manipulations with his assortment of effects pedals. They ended the set with the slow-burner "Dear June", not bothering with the whole faux-encore routine -- which is something more bands should do.
They had a really good live energy, and while it was cool to see them in a setting as intimate as the Media Club, I definitely want to see them in a bit bigger venue -- or at least on a bigger stage -- so they can stretch their legs. And although I was quite disappointed that they didn't play "Kasparov" -- definitely my favourite song off of Co-Op Mode and probably one of my favourite songs from last year -- it was still an insanely fun and damn good set. Next time they come through town, there will definitely be no fence-sitting.