Concert Reviews

Last Night: of Montreal at the Granada Theater

of Montreal, Noot d' Noot
Granada Theater
May 24, 2010

Better than:
the last show I saw at Granada.

Quite the spectacle last night from of Montreal at the Granada Theater. Not quite a repeat of the band's highly theatrical 2008 show at House of Blues, but, still, the Athens, Georgia-based band put on one heck of a show.

It started on a high note: As the stage curtain raised, the band launched into "Suffer for Fashion" from 2007's Hissing Fauna, Are You The Destroyer? Immediately, the crowd responded with yelps of excitement and even some started dancing.

Then frontman Kevin Barnes--clad in a white T-shirt, a scarf, jean shorts and blue leggings-- shimmied onto the stage to join his bandmates.

And the room? It erupted.

And, from there, things only got bigger.

Large monitors behind and on either side of the stage displayed all kinds of madness--illustrations, sketches, live video, you name it. The band's clothing, meanwhile, was quite fun, too, with each member was sporting something florescent.

But it wasn't maybe, what fans have come to expect from the band's live show. There were no major costume changes, and, even more shockingly, Barnes never took his clothes off.

There were some real treats, though: The band gave the crowd a sneak peek into False Priest, its lastest album that is set to drop this fall, playing a new track called "Coquet Coquette." The crowd, unsurprisingly, ate it up--right along with everything else the band served up last night.

During the band's two-song encore, someone dressed up in a pig costume walked out onto the stage, all the while the words "Nitro's Art Show" were displayed on the projection screens behind the band. Then out rolled two mounds of material, two pieces of what was presumably Nitro's (the pig's?) art work.

The band then encouraged the audience to "boo" at the art, even calling it "shit art".

As if that wasn't surreal enough, immediately after the pig was escorted off the stage--by another pig--the projections abruptly flashed to images of Jesus on a cross with gnashing teeth protruding from his chest and spinning occult pentagrams on his sides.

It was somewhat astounding: Only minutes earlier, the screens were lit up with multi-colored, blinking scribbles of "I love you."

"Thank you for letting us be ourselves", a sweat-drenched Kevin Barnes shouted into his microphone at that point, as feathers, illuminated from the glow of the stage lights, cascaded around him. 

Later, finished off it's night with a song from both Hissing Fauna, Are You The Destroyer? and Skeletal Lamping--"Beware Our Nubile Miscreants," followed by "She's a Rejecter." At the end of that latter song, Barnes was tied up and dragged off the stage by two enormous skeleton-masked specters, presumably never to be seen again (in Dallas at least) until the tour for the band's upcoming album, False Priest

Not as theatrical as the band's last show, no. But still pretty darn theatrical nonetheless.

Earlier in the night, soul-meets-funk act Noot D'Noot warmed the crowd up quite nicely, even persuading some to dance along to their music.

Critic's Notebook
Personal Bias:
I'm one of those people gets annoyed when people screw up the difference between "of" and "Of" in the band's name.

Random Note: I can't remember the last time, if ever, I heard screams that loud for an encore at the Granada. It was seriously as loud as it could be--without being that horrible shrill sound of teenage girls at a Disney pop-star concert.

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Catherine Downes
Contact: Catherine Downes