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The New Pornographers, Dodos & the Dutchess and the Duke played Terminal 5 – pics & setlist

photos by Greg Cristman, words by Rachel Kowal

Terminal 5

The New Pornographers may be considered to be hopelessly passé by some, but for better or worse, they got a fair amount of play during my college radio days, so they are one of those bands that that I look back at fondly – even if their last two or three albums left me feeling somewhat ambivalent.

Founded in 1997, they’re veterans of the Canadian indie rock movement. They’ve seen the industry evolve and shift to accommodate one fad or another, and through it all, they held their ground and continued to churn out expansive power pop medleys year after year. With Carl Newman (A.C. Newman), Neko Case and Dan Bejar (Destroyer) in the mix, The New Pornographers also served as something of a prototype for the modern supergroup.

For Saturday night’s show at Terminal 5 (one night after the CD throwing incident in Boston), The New Pornographers focused heavily on their newest album, Together, playing all but three songs from it. But in addition to showcasing the new material, they dipped deeper into their discography and pulled out songs like: “Sing Me Spanish Techno,” “Mass Romantic,” and “The Electric Version.” Their set list for the evening was expansive, but the band talked little between songs and sometimes powered into the next with no more than a brief break for applause. One of the show’s major highlights came during the final song of their encore, “Testament to Youth in Verse,” when Newman engaged the audience with a slowly building sing-along.

The sound throughout the evening definitely seemed to be too loud – especially with the Dodos. The levels were fine for build-ups and breakdowns, but everything in between suffered. Whenever a song picked up the tempo and increased in volume, the sound started to blend together to create one inchoate mass of energy. Individual guitar riffs became muddled and vocals, indecipherable.

Luckily for Terminal 5, the additional New Pornographers show at the Bell House on Sunday night wasn’t announced until after Saturday night’s show had already sold out. Given the vastly improved sound quality at the Bell House and its more intimate size and layout, couldn’t help but wonder what Sunday night’s show (where they promised to do at least ten different songs) was going to be like in comparison (pictures from that one coming soon).

I got to the venue too late to see The Dutchess and the Duke, who like the Dodos, are still on tour with The New Pornographers. More pictures (of all three bands) from the T5 show, and the headliner’s setlist, below…

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Dutchess and the Duke….

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The Dodos…

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The New Pornographers…

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The New Pornographers set list
Sing Me Spanish Techno
Up in the Dark
Myriad Harbor
Use It
Crash Years
Jackie, Dressed in Cobras
A Bite Out of My Bed
Adventures in Solitude
[Happy Birthday song to Kathryn, the keyboardist]
Sweet Talk, Sweet Talk
Go Places
All the Old Showstoppers
Jackie
Moves
Your Hands (Together)
Twin Cinema
My Shephard
The Laws Have Changed
Silver Jenny Dollar
Mass Romantic
Bleeding Hearts Show

Encore
Challengers
The Electric Version
Slow Descent into Alcoholism
Testament to Youth In Verse

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