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Concert Photography, Concert Reviews, Music

Concert Review + Photos: Brendan Canning, The Gallop @ Zaphod Beeblebrox

By: Calum Slingerland

Brendan Canning. (Photo: Scott Penner/Aesthetic Magazine Toronto)

Brendan Canning. (Photo: Scott Penner/Aesthetic Magazine Toronto)

While fans of Canadian indie music darlings Broken Social Scene hope the group will one day return in full capacity from hiatus, they can take solace in that  the band members haven’t slowed down their own musical outputs one bit. Band co-founder Brendan Canning is no exception, having recently released his second solo record titled You Gots 2 Chill, an album which was described by Pitchfork as “a bedtime record, in both the complementary and dismissive senses of the word’ that ‘soothes like a warm cup of tea.”

Taking the record on tour for a second run of dates, Canning stopped in at Zaphod Beeblebrox in Ottawa’s Byward Market last night to play to a packed house. The atmosphere was quite ‘chill’ as the album title implies, with the crowd largely enthralled by the band’s dreamy (at times shoegazey) sonics, as they opened the show with a decidedly richer, electric version of leading single “Plugged In”. Other highlights included more material from the record that has since been fleshed-out, such as a beautiful, lush version of “Once a Lighthouse” – a track that was initially recorded to Canning’s answering machine for the album. The delicate, atmospheric  “Late Night Stars” put the crowd in a calming trance, unusually calming for a Friday night concert in the nation’s capital.

Perhaps the most surprising moment of the show was when Canning performed a cover from someone he addressed as the “most famous Canadian”. It turned out to be a charming version of Drake’s ubiquitous “Hold On, We’re Going Home”, though it didn’t register with a large portion of the crowd while they searched the lyrics on their smartphones. It was enjoyable to see Canning deliver a show that wasn’t a Broken Social Scene hit parade, or a complete play-through of You Gots 2 Chill.

Indie rock locals The Gallop began the evening with a memorable set. With a new EP set for release next month, handful of new tunes as well as selections from their 2012 full-length album, Untitled, dominated their set. The yet-to-be released tracks were impressive live – the band’s intricate vocal harmonies were well supported by their trio of guitarists and tasteful trumpet player, which provided a captivating performance.  

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Brendan Canning
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The Gallop
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