Sunday, September 18, 2011

Live in Edmonton: The Junior Boys

"People have commented that I make Canadian records and I sort of embrace that to the extent that I like to make records that have a lot of empty space in them." ~ Jeremy Greenspan
My first gig in Edmonton turned out to be at the Starlite Room last week where Canadian wunderkinds, the Junior Boys, electrified the capacity crowd. The trio's suave take on synthpop made for a good show, even if it was somewhat brief and a bit monochromatic. The Starlite is a small venue, about the same size as the old Town Pump in Vancouver, but that didn't hamper the throbbing beats and synth-splashes from sizzling off the stage like hot neon crystals.

Like fellow Canuck Dan Bejar of Destroyer, lead singer Jeremy Greenspan is a crooner. He clearly revels in vamping and primping around the stage as he switches from guitar to synth, then back to his mic. Vocally reminiscent of such 80s bands as OMD and Spandau Ballet, the band's overall aesthetic is sleek and contemporary - think Ariel Pink without the trash.

Throughout the 80 minute performance, I kept hoping for a burst of colour to spill over the crowd, but sadly the Starlite remained dull and flat. Maybe next time throw a little champagne in with the sizzle, fellas...

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