Library Voices + Graham Wright – Casa Del Popolo – 26.10.11
As aforementioned, a bunch of great guys were helping equally as great Graham Wright (from Tokyo Police Club, yes) with his set. If the names don’t sound familiar to you, then as always I highly recommend you check them out, because it’s always nice to support your Canadian bands! Justice McLellan, from Ruby Coast was playing guitar; Spencer MacEachern, from Spencer MacEachern and The Fabulous Yawn was playing bass; and Joe Manzione, who runs Fourth Street Drum co., was playing… well, drums. The guys played a bunch of Graham’s surprisingly upbeat new songs, in comparison to his The Lakes of Alberta EP, which you can stream here. You can also listen to a few of the new songs off his debut album, Shirts vs. Skins, on his Facebook page. Their delivery of songs was bursting at the seams with energy, however the crowd was a little timid, so after a few songs, Graham asked: “Have you guys ever worked a part-time job?” he elaborated, saying that usually, nobody wants to get on their manager’s bad side. He then continued: “Well, Library Voices is our manager on this tour, and they said that if we don’t get everyone standing by the end of this set, they’ll fire us.” and in that way, he urged a few more people to get off their chairs and come closer to the stage. It was quite the efficient tactic. Amongst that, they covered the start of the dare-I-say classic “99 problems” by Jay-Z. And more banter. And then some. When they ended their set, they gave themselves a very modest B for their efforts.
At this point, Regina, Saskatchewan natives, Library Voices were setting up, as I was writing down a few notes. Meanwhile, all the people who were sheepishly standing in the back, came up closer to the stage. I looked up, and all of a sudden the floor looked even more full than I thought it had been previously. It wasn’t good enough for the band though. Before even starting their set, bassist Eoin Hickey talked to the crowd: “Remember the first time you open-mouth kissed someone? You were probably like ‘What the fuck, this is mostly just gross.’ But I’m just going to ask you guys to squish together a little more. I know it’s awkward at first, but I promise you’ll feel fine about it(…)” and so the crowd followed the bassist’s directions. Interestingly enough, it seemed as though the tension disappeared the second the space between the people in the crowd diminished. The band started off with a bang, playing multiple songs off their recently released album, Summer of Lust. Before they started playing ”Generation Handclap” they invited Graham Wright back on stage to play the saxophone. I was amazed at how so many people fit onto that tiny stage. That, and how they still managed to jump and throw themselves around. The chemistry was so great; the energy was just pouring off the little platform… and the crowd mirrored it’s intensity! They also played their older songs; including “Kundera On The Dancefloor”, and “Hunting Ghosts” to name a couple. I really don’t want to make this review too long, because I could go on forever, I really could, so i’ll just end it like this: Both bands played a fantastic show that brought people together for a few hours and made them forget about the stigmata that surround socializing and acting eccentric; and it was amazing to just watch that happen around you.
-Written by Sarvenaz Amir-E.
-Photos by Alana Malcolm