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Thursday, July 31, 2008

Wolf Parade at T5 New York

Terminal 5. Sometimes you have to endure horrific security guards, bad views, inferior sound and unpleasant staff to see your favorite bands and tonight was no exception. Wolf Parade stormed on stage and made these not so pleasant memories fade quickly within the first few songs. The band was in top form on their first of two NYC shows. They performed amazingly tight as they blended their new and old material into an amazing live set.

Singer guitarist Dan Boeckner was looking extra wolfy with his new beard and vocalist Spencer Krug looked extra bookish hiding behind his large keyboard occasionally popping his head up like a crazed muppet. The two singers took turns howling and screaming in songs and shrieking heartfelt melodies in cadence in the choruses. Drummer Arlen Thompson was on fire on keeping beats in time and adding some really great dynamics to the tunes. Hadji Bakara kept quiet behind the keys as usual twisting and turning sound effects but Dante DeCaro was out much more on display out in the front of the stage singing and playing bass with the two band leaders.

My Wolf Parade experience began in Montreal in 2004 as I was recommended their self released six song EP from the owner of Cheap Thrills record store. I loved the raw intensity of their original recordings off the first two EPs and was not too impressed with the Issac Brock produced Apologies to the Queen Mary debut. I was hoping that their new album would capture their rawness on their new LP At Mount Zoomer but I found it a little flat; not the music, just the recording. Their new material sounded amazing live it had that Wolf Parade oomph that seemed to be missing. During the end of their set, Spencer told the energized crowd to please mosh nicely and that it wasn't even that fast a song. The band ended the show with the epic "Kissing the Beehive," on which Dan's guitar solos were shrilling to say the least.

The band returned to the stage and Dan said he gets nervous about playing New York City shows and thanked the crowd for being so nice. They played "Shine A Light" and another tune from Apologies. Two shows at T5 and this one sold out: I think next time New York sees Wolf Parade might be at Radio City Music Hall.

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