Saturday, July 31, 2010

Boise Audience Has a "Mass Romantic" Crush on New Pornographers

Posted By on Sat, Jul 31, 2010 at 7:08 PM

With five albums under their belts, the members of Canadian indie-rock super group, The New Pornographers, have learned a thing or two about putting on an outstanding live show.

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At last night’s concert at The Egyptian Theatre, their diverse set of spunky, pop-driven hits kept the audience hoppin’ and stompin’ for more than two hours. And even though Neko Case joked that dancing was optional, one could argue only half-deaf fuddy-duddies would have kept their butts glued to the seat.

After solid performances by Imaad Wasif and San Francisco kids The Dodos, the nine Vancouver natives sauntered onto the stage opening the show with the quintessential New Pornographers power-anthem “Sing Me Spanish Techno” from their 2005 album Twin Cinema. As noted in BW’s interview with frontman A.C. Newman last week, The New Pornographers have mastered the art of playing a solid balance of songs from each of their albums. For the two hours on stage, the group grabbed hits from each of their releases. With nine performers, achieving a full sound was no challenge, especially with a bounty of interesting instrumentation, including strings, dueling keyboards and an accordion.

Although there were no threatening outbursts from Neko Case, the fiery redhead still managed to steal the show. Dressed in a perfectly worn graphic tee and a flannel shirt that symbolized her laissez-faire, “I don’t give a damn” attitude, Case blew audiences away with her flawless and sultry voice on nearly every song. Her heartbroken and anguished crooning on “Go Places” was especially noteworthy, especially as she was accompanied by Kathryn Calder on accordion.

The very talented Dan Bejar (frontman for the bandDestroyer) was frequently absent, often disappearing backstage. However, when he did return—each time with different bottle of beer in hand— the crowd instantly responded with cheers, especially as the band broke into “Myriad Harbour” and “Silver Jenny Dollar.” Although every song could be considered big crowd pleasers, if the group was to captivate audiences with just one song, it would’ve been the guitar-heavy classic “Mass Romantic.”

Although the sound quality of The Egyptian left something to be desired, the historic venue offers both class and intimacy and, with its quirkiness and fun-spirited nature, was the perfect place to see the quirky and spirited New Pornographers.

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