Tuesday, April 22, 2008

Trouble In Dreams

concert review: Destroyer, Colossal Yes @ Lee's Palace (Toronto, Ontario), April 19, 2007

Destroyer at Lee's Palace: photo by Michael Ligon

Even if Oakland, California trio Colossal keyboard-playing frontman Utrillo Kushner mentioned that this show was the first time they'd played more than a few shows in a row, doesn't necessarily excuse them for being a little lacklustre. They weren't without their merits though. I give them props for bringing back the Ben Folds Five configuration - drums, bass guitar, and a keyboard-playing vocalist. There were some moments of enjoyment - a sunny melody here, some spunky rhythms there, and even a little bit of Wilco-esque alt country edginess but overall they lacked the liveliness and charm that Ben Folds Five were known for. Chalk it up to inexperience but perhaps they'll get better with time.

The night did only get slightly better with headliner Destroyer, featuring frontman Dan Bejar and a full band lineup. While Dan's presence was missed slightly for The New Pornographers show at the Phoenix on April 8, I figured the Destroyer show would make up for that. It's surprising that even as rockin'(instrumentally speaking) as Destroyer's set was, it was actually a little boring, part of that due to me not recognizing many of the songs. At least according to some concert-goers, most of the songs were from the most recent album "Trouble In Dreams"(which I purchased at the show, if only because it was only $12) and from past album "This Night", two albums that I hadn't heard. Disappointedly, I only recognized "Rubies" off of Destroyer's last album "Destroyer's Rubies". The intricate pop of some of Destroyer's earlier work was missed for most of the set, replaced by a rockier tone that while I did find enjoyable in spurts, it would have been more of a satisfying set had Dan rounded out the set list a bit better. But so it goes.

Photos to come(only a few, so don't get your hopes up). Update: Here they are finally.

MySpace: Colossal Yes
MySpace: Destroyer

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