Duchess Says and Solids played BV-presented M for Montreal showcase (pics)
photos by Maximillian G. San Juan / M for Montreal; words by Bill Pearis
Duchess Says @ Cabaret Underworld, 11/22/2013
M for Montreal and Brooklyn Vegan have partnered for shows/parties at CMJ, SXSW, The Great Escape and more, but this was the first year we actually presented a show at M for Montreal. The fest, now in its eighth year, happened over the weekend and our show (co-presented with CMJ) happened at the grungy Cabaret Underworld on Friday (11/22) with an all-Montreal line-up of We are Wolves, Duchess Says and Solids.
I've seen electropunks Duchess Says a number of times over the years, though mostly with US crowds in half-filled rooms where mischievous dynamo singer Annie-Claude heads into to the crowd to mess with people who don't know what to expect. This show, everyone at the way-sold-out Underworld knew what to expect and were ready to pay Annie-Claude's insanity in kind. This was easily one of the most sweaty, bonkers shows for me in recent memory (mind you I don't go to that many shows with bonkers potential anymore). I don't think there was any point where someone wasn't aloft. Except for when Annie-Claude had everyone hunch down on the floor and she covered the crowd with a giant piece of blue paper.
Openers Solids, newly signed to Fat Possum, had the crowd going too, providing their own light show in the form of two painter lights -- one hanging over the band, the other over the crowd. Both were swatted at and swinging for most of the set. They get compared to Japandroids a lot -- similar two-piece setup -- but Solids lean a little more indie rock. They're also little less intense, but just as loud and I thought their set was pretty terrific.
After the intensity of Duchess Says' set, I fought my way to the back of Underworld and never made it back up close for We Are Wolves set -- which was a little theatrical, with masks and props to go along with their gothy, synth leanings. But the crowd was into it.
You can read recaps of M for Montreal day 1 HERE and day 2 HERE, plus check out a few photos from Mac DeMarco's closing-night set HERE. More pics of Duchess Says and Solids (none of We Are Wolves, unfortunately) below...