It was cruel for July Talk to play at the end of October, reminding us that summer is over. With a lineup around St-Laurent and onto Ste-Catherine Street, the sold out Club Soda welcomed Kingswood, from Melbourne. As far as opening bands go, I started by thinking these guys were good. A few songs in, I’m thinking this band is great. During “I can feel that you don’t love me” they had the crowd sing along, no small feat for an opening band! For “So Long” a soulful guitar solo turned epic and now I’m thinking this band will be headlining soon!
I spoke to the band after the show and they simply loved Montreal. They are releasing their new album shortly, so stay tuned.
She’s My Baby
I Can Feel That You Don’t Love Me
The opening band had a pretty full house, but it was clear the excitement was building for July Talk.
I first saw July Talk at MRCY last year and was amazed by their performance. I was looking forward to seeing them in a smaller venue like Club Soda. Somewhere between the Corona and Metropolis in size, this venue was packed, but with a respectful crowd.
Liam, standing next to me was hoping to hear “Summer Dress” and got his wish as they started off the show with this bluesy number. Right from the start, I knew this night was going to be special. The playful juxtaposition of the Tom Waits like voice of Peter Dreimanis and the girlish voice of Leah Fay play off each other like peanut butter and jam. One is a little nutty, the other sweet. It simply works and the resulting mix combined with an energy that can only be described as volcanic eruption for the sold out crowd tonight.
Mixing the old songs with the new, July Talk had the crowd wrapped around its little finger. The majority of the songs were from the Touch album, but the hits from their self titled album got the crowd singing along. Leah strolled through the crowd at one point involving the crowd in the performance. A little while later, Peter surfed the crowd still playing the guitar and returning to the stage without missing a beat. For “I’ve Rationed Well”, the tradition of Leah sharing Jameson with members of the band continued, with the addition of the fan in the front that Peter accidentally kicked in the head. Talk about connecting with your audience…literally in this case.
What a wonderful crowd. No pushing or shoving, well behaved and appreciative, at one point clapping and cheering for so long, it could have been a song in itself!
They ended the night with an exit to thunderous applause and quick return to play “Touch” and “The Garden”. It was clear that they gave it their all, as Peter completely lost his voice when I met him and Leah after the show. They posed for pictures with the fans and signed albums. I liked that they had pictures, some framed at the merch booth. Great souvenirs from one of my personal favourite shows this year. Yes, it was that good and intimate that it makes my top 5 for 2016.
Peter’s white shirt that he wears for every show will get washed, his voice will return to a growl and the show will go on in the next town fortunate enough to host them. I’m still not sure if they are an annoying brother and sister, or playfully in a relationship, but it’s better not to know and simply enjoy the show.
Blood + Honey
Beck + Call
Johnny + Mary
Lola + Joseph
Jesus Said So
Guns & Ammunition
Now I Know
I’ve Rationed Well
Push + Pull