Tuesday, July 27, 2010

[review] Wolf Parde @ Showbox (7-26-2010)

Wolf Parade delivers the "Royal Mix"

Last night Wolf Parade treated Seattleites with another fantastic show at the Showbox. To give a little historical significance, my first Wolf Parade "live experience" occurred at the Showbox in August of '06 - WP had just released Apologies to the Queen Mary and were touring with Frog Eyes and Whale Bones on the "Spiritual Animal Tour." During that show, I remember feeling that WP was on the verge of something big. It would take a few years of insane touring and numerous side projects before Wolf Parade garnered the respect and notoriety that the talented five-some deserved. In that time, other WP appearances in Seattle occurred in '07 with Holy Fuck, followed by the surprise show after the Sub Pop Fest in '08 with Foals.

So after what felt like a long drought, WP finally made their way back to Jet City in support of their 3rd LP Expo 86. For some reason, it seemed very fittingly to be back at the Showbox. The set list is posted below, and I'd have to say I was very happy with the tunes they showcased last night. A few songs into the set, lead singer/keyboardist Spencer Krug informed the audience that we'd be getting an even mix of old and new songs, which lead singer/guitarist Dan Boeckner dubbed as the "Royal Mix." The old tunes still had that new song smell to them (revamped and rejuvinated), and the new tunes were full of energy which kept the night fresh. Highlights of the set included the very well-received "Ghost Pressure" (which featured Krug on omnichord), "Fine Young Cannibals," and the rarely performed "In the Direction of the Moon." What struck me most was how amazing each song from At Mount Zoomer sounded in concert. I really wish Zoomer had been recorded live like Apologies and Expo; hearing those songs performed at a show sound so much better than the studio cuts.

And the band was really on fire last night. Boeckner as always looked like a Fraggle rocker on steroids - full of energy and spastically churning out the hits. Krug was a young Beethoven-incarnate, complete with wild hair and his ear only inches from the keys. At some point in the night drummer Arlen Thompson must have called upon the thunder gods, which invoked a dance party with his skillful stick-play, and Dante DeCaro kept the rhythm section together by filling in the missing space left behind after the departure of Hadji Bakara.

All in all, those who attended last night's show left with smiles on their faces. The encore set contained one song from each of the band's three LPs. I was thrilled to hear the classic "You Are a Runner and I Am My Father's Son" followed by "Yulia," and the night ended with an unabridged performance of "Kissing the Beehive" in all its 11 minutes of glory. As always, Wolf Parade did not disappoint.

Wolf Parade set list (7-26-2010)
Soldier's Grin
What Did My Lover Say? (It Always Had To Go This Way)
Palm Road
Dear Sons and Daughters of Hungry Ghosts
Ghost Pressure
Cloud Shadow on the Mountain
Fine Young Cannibals
In the Direction of the Moon
This Heart's On Fire
I'll Believe In Anything
Pobody's Nerfect
California Dreamer
You Are a Runner and I Am My Father's Son
Kissing the Beehive

Photos :: courtesy of Laura Musselman


Jeff said...

Fantastic set, and the encore itself is a perfect mini-concert. I hope to see a similar set tonight in Portland! Very happy they still play I'll Believe in Anything...my personal favorite Krug tune, I just wish he'd throw it in rotation during Sunset Rubdown shows to give it that treatment too.

Greg said...

Yeah, "I'll Believe in Anything" got a great crowd reaction. Personally, I wish they would play "Things I Don't Know," which I thought would have made it on an album by now. Maybe on the WP EP that could surface sometime soon (fingers crossed)?

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