“Park Avenue leads to [an Indie show]” as Sebastian Bach would not say. Montreal’s Park Avenue in the Mile End district is a nice neighbourhood, but it is flooded with three-quarter pants and over-the-ear toques that, similarly to Will Smith‘s parents, I just don’t understand – both clothing styles failing to keep the head and legs fully covered and warm, especially when it’s still mid-April in Montreal. I suppose considering their lack of coverage, the styles complement each other. Contrary to the fashion and the opening band’s name, the music performed at Fairmount Theater this past Saturday, April 13th was not bad.
Bad Sounds, whose debut album entitled Get Better is OUT NOW!!, ignited the night with their energizing and uplifting music all while, ironically, maintaining a very laidback and nonchalant attitude. With their catchy jingles and powerful harmonies, Merrett brothers Ewan and Calum led their army of cool cats and fuelled the army of fans and crowd members that filled the venue. The smoke screens, fluorescent lights, and funky rhythm sections made for some very good summertime vibes. The only downfall was not that the drums and bass were brain-bustingly loud, but rather that the microphone levels were a few notches too low in order to compete with the intense instrumental volumes. Regardless, the solid vocals still permeated the room. Putting down their weapons of mass seduction, but most certainly not putting out the fire they started, Bad Sounds signed out with a very humble ”Enjoy your night!”, leaving the stage still in smoke.
Send Broods. Send them back to Montreal next year, that is – perhaps to a larger venue than the Fairmount Theater, for there was a fair ‘mount of people attending this time, and there would probably be a significant amount more next year.
Whether it was lead vocalist Georgia Nott sporting a red cowboy hat matching her red jacket, or her brother Caleb with the funky shades, the members of Broods have a pretty funky look – a look that not only fits in on Park Avenue, but one that jives well with Broods’ musical styles. With drums off to the side of the stage as opposed to in the back, three keyboards, and bright The 1975-like pastel stage lights turning on and off throughout their set, Broods brought a style that wasn’t only musically unique, but very visually unique, as well. Although the microphone levels were still a bit under par, Nott’s voice was strong and angelic enough to be heard from the heavens, and the supportive vocal tracks backing her voice were as colourful as the lights above them.
Giving credit where credit’s due, but also having to be a bit of a critical nag, there was a lack of crowd interaction on Broods’ part for the majority of the show. It was only during the tenth song ”Hold The Line” that Georgia started interacting and speaking with the crowd. Nevertheless, the crowd was quite supportive, and receptive to their performance right from the start as they opened with ”Sucker.” Getting on her own set of keyboards during ”To Belong,” she really only started to show off her wild side mid-set during ”Are You Home.” Her headbanging dance moves started to take over, and continued throughout the second and more upbeat half of their performance. They proved that my assessment of them as not being a hype band was wrong, for the crowd was certainly feeding off the energy that Broods was projecting from the stage.
Laying down his bass guitar and switching to keyboards during ”Why Do You Believe” as well as sharing his own lead vocal talents with the crowd during ”Too Proud,” both Caleb and Georgia displayed their versatility and multiple talents, while of course being held together solidly by their accompanying team mates on guitar and drums, and by the backing tracks which the sound guy mixed in smoothly and gracefully.
Written by Keenan Kerr
*edited by Kate Erickson