100 Shows of 2010 - #52: Young Galaxy @ Black Cat, 8/12/10

Pretty lights and a fog machine and fabulous glitter oh my! Given those three elements, I was already very favorably inclined towards really liking those visiting Montrealians Young Galaxy. Thankfully, when they started to play, I was sent into throes of joy, because this here band is pretty darn good at making live music. They were so good that not even the ridiculousness of the DC parking Gestapo could dampen my evening (though it was a good effort, you bloody meanies).

MINI RECAP: Young Galaxy = Glitter Ball Glorious! Overall score: B+.

I do so love bands that seem to have several personalities, and based on the set Young Galaxy knocked out, they’ve got quite a few. We were given anything and everything in this set, from gloriously loud washes of noise to more structured, synthy and almost glammy pop to darker moments of slight melancholia. At times it got straight up dramatic, with the white lights shining down on Stephen Ramsay as he throttled his guitar and thrashed his way all over the place. And then, there was their endearingly silly banter (such as the dedication of "Swing Your Heartache" to the crowd, because we smelled "the best of any of the cities we've been in," which, evidently, is musky) to take things down a notch.

I was all sorts of impressed for most of the band’s set. “Destroyer” sounded impeccable, slightly tongue-in-cheek and tiptoeing along the fringes of musical bombast. At such moments the band reminded me a lot of stellastarr*, with all those big chords and the big, sweeping vocals. Not only did the band as a whole impress the heck out of me, but so too does Catherine McCandless and her big ole siren song of a voice. Not only can this girl rock an asymmetical haircut, but she can sing circles around most ladies. With that commanding presence of hers and the strength of her voice, I was hooked. Also serving to reel me in was their seriously sensational cover of the Cure's "Primary". It was the perfect song for them to cover. Serious bonus points on that, and perhaps even Mr. Robert Smith himself would have approved.

It was all very serious, and yet all very good fun. And who doesn’t like fun on a Thursday night, eh? Moving from balladland to infectious synth-laden hooks, Young Galaxy showed this girl quite a good time, and they’ll almost positively do the very same for you. There’s only one way to find out, friends.

mp3: Queen Drum (Young Galaxy from Invisible Republic)


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