I’m Alive

Just in case you thought I was no longer alive…stop worrying. I’m fine.

Let me follow up on Toronto Island…better late then never!

We were shipped off to an island to witness amazing music and drink expensive bottled water. All worth it, of course. There were plenty of rain jackets, rubber boots and umbrellas. There was a threat of rain that NEVER came, so instead we used our umbrellas to block the beating sun. The day was hot, due to both weather and stage presence.

The ferries were packed tightly and we had to wait for a few rounds before getting on. We eventually got there, but by that time had already missed a few of the openers, including the love of my life, Timber Timbre. I cried a little, but my missing it will be made up for this Sunday!

Beach House took the stage as everyone flooded onto the island. Many were arriving a bit late, like myself. Everyone was quite mellow and chill, wondering what was going on. Who was taking the stage? We were all quite lost, trapped in a sea of people and trying to squeeze by security guards who eagerly look into your bag.

Victoria Legrand can really rock out, even when the crowd doesn’t seem to know how to. I guess some find dream pop difficult to head bang to, but this girl does not. She’s amazing, as are her vocals. Her deep voice is sultry and when she opened her mouth, I almost forgot this was a live show and I was not daydreaming in my bedroom again. I stood back a bit, in awe. I was pretty much lost in the music. Most of the set consisted of Teen Dream. It was amazing, don’t get me wrong. But I would have loved to hear a bit more of Devotion and the self titled album from ’06. Maybe next time…

I have photos, but due to the lack of a press pass, my Nikon was not allowed on the island. You’ll have to fare with my pictures from my little canon powershot…

Up next was Band of Horses. The crowd really came alive, pushing and shoving towards the front. It went from a mellow afternoon to a bit of a rough one. I managed to squeeze myself in there, and I found myself between some rather sweaty, smelly people. The music over-shadowed this, though, as did the smell of marijuana. I’ll be honest, I like them, but I don’t love them. It was a nice change of scene but by this point I was pretty amped for BSS and Pavement. A total dream come true, two amazing bands, together! Nonetheless, BOH was fun to rock out to.

Then it happened.

Broken Social Scene took the stage.

Everyone was wondering who would be there, naturally. Every time I’ve seen them, it is a big surprise. But we’re in Toronto. Something good is about to happen.

And it did.

First of all, who is that guy in the tank? OH shit, it’s a beardless Brendan Canning. Yes, ladies and gentlemen, he seems to have shaved it off. It was getting hot, so I don’t blame him.

I wasn’t surprised when they opened with World Sick. I actually kind of figured they would, with the new album release and all. A lot of newer songs were played, but there were some classic BSS moments thrown in. And can you imagine, they closed with Ibi Dreams of Pavement. Complete perfection, with Pavement being present, and all.

It’s funny that G20 and the island show came so close together. Kevin Drew could not resist to mention it, of course…

Something along the lines of the world leaders and a circle jerk…

Feist makes me happy, as does Emily Haines. I’m sure I’m not the only one. The crowd’s reaction was too obvious. Poor Lisa. We still love her though.

Time for the closing act, or “the kicker” as some would say.

PAVEMENT!

I was surprised to see so many people flooding away from the crowd making more room for me and others who were just as eager. The timing was just right, the sun was setting, and the mood was pretty solid.

This was a concert I never thought I would get to see. When I first saw the poster back in January I was a bit surprised and knew from the start if I wasn’t there, it would mean I must have died in a freak accident before being able to witness something so amazing. I would not let this happen.

Before getting there, I already knew what I wanted to hear. And they opened with a classic that made the crowd burst with excitement. What’s that, you say? Cut your hair.

They followed up with some songs I was really looking forward to hearing…Gold Soundz, Elevate Me Later, Shady Lane, Perfume-V, Range Life and Summer Babe.

Oh yeah, and Kevin Drew and Band of Horses frontman Ben Bridwell hit the stage with ’em.

A guy behind me was pretty excited about summer babe. It was the last song played before the encore, and he was yelling it the entire performance. They finally got the hint. They came back for an encore just to make us all a little more happy than we already were. My head was about to explode when they played Stop Breathin’. Could I possibly handle any more awesome? Answer: obviously.

This concert has been added to my top five. Even with the ridiculous ferry wait…which was about a little over an hour, it was well worth sailing away to an island to experience one of the best shows of my life. I apologize profusely if you were not there.

Over and out.

But I’ll be back for Bluesfest updates.

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