Friday, March 16, 2012

Elliott Brood - The Pack A.D. -- DC9 - Mar 15 2012

The Pack A.D. - Two women from Vancouver on guitar, drums and with microphones. Not sure if that sounds dangerous, but it was. The guitarist barely saw the back end of the mic stand arm whiz by her face as the drummer moved it aside (think 3 Stooges bit). "Wow, I just missed you. That would have been funny... and not." Revenge came later when guitars were changed as that big awkward arm got bumped and the drummer got the classic tooth polishing that all singers get from time to time. Ouch. The music was not quit this dangerous... not quite. No attempts at Jack White here, just the threat of reckless abandon that really stayed quite tight, but in your face. Vocal work was sturdy with good harmonies as opposed to intense shrieking. Drum beats were as rudimentary as they come, but they all varied which was cool. All cymbals were tightened to the point they looked like high hats and rang only a bit longer. Powerful Ramones type songs done faster with occasional pull backs into bluesier garage. Even a touch of psychobilly at times. Raw and composed, reminding me of after show jams such as maybe Randy Rampage on drums and Chuck Biscuits on guitar or something (to stick with the Vancouver theme reminding me of things I witnessed so long ago). Bright, funny, two-to-four chords, they had simple recipe cooked to perfection and were a hit with this large crowd. And the 50 minute set never felt long for a second.
Elliott Brood - The Toronto trio is back touring its third album. I have been a fan since the outset and saw nothing to lower my appreciation for them tonight. They channel a few of my favorite bands, 16 Horsepower, the Sadies and even the Pogues, but don't have the doom of the first, the moodiness of the second or craziness of the third. But they do have some of the catchiest songwriting this side of those great bands. They deliver loads of rootsy hooks that really rock out with a tempo that starts the toes tapping, but ends with more swaying and dancing. The cuts off the new LP sound very good, but old favorites like "Chuckwagon" still rocked the house thoroughly. And "Write it All Down for You" cannot fail to work live with its infectious 'hey hey hey's to shout along with. The drummer holds it all together while the guitars, banjos, and ukuleles strum powerfully along with some psyche coloring at times. They pull in all the elements and of great music and push forward rather than go out on limbs. This works when you are good and the size of the crowd and the enthusiasm generated proved that tonight.

Quote of the Night: From the Pack A.D.'s drummer... "It's fuckin' hot, eh?" "We don't even talk that way, eh? But if it will make you happy..."

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