September 30, 2012

Live show review: Mutemath at The Phoenix Theatre on September 25th, 2012


It's been almost 5 years since New Orleans rock band, Mutemath stepped on Canuck soil. Many of the die-hard fans didn't have a choice but to travel to the U.S to witness their mind-blowing live performance. I have been to NYC and Lollapalooza to see them twice in the last 5 years. But it's not the same when your favorite band comes to your town, right? At last, after 3 albums and some member changes, Mutemath came back to Toronto and delivered a vivacious live performance at Phoenix Theatre on September 25th, 2012.

Once the recorded music commenced from out of nowhere and the stage lit up, the members crawled through the audience from the back of the venue to the stage. They made it on the stage and once the drummer, Darren King, greeted and put his well-worn headphone and duck-taped it around his head, it meant it was the time to start of their set... The guitar intro of Typical provoked screams from the long-awaiting fans and sing-along session started in the entire venue.


The set included tunes from the last three albums, yet, more skued toward the self-titled debut album, including Beautiful, Plan B, Control, Chaos, and Break the Same. (Perhaps it was carved out for the Toronto audience who'd  waited for them to come back for the last 5 years)These songs focused more on the melodic integration with catchy tunes and guitar riffs rather than the peculiar yet captivating rhythm lines, which you can enjoy in songs from the latest album, Odd Soul. Songs like Blood Pressure and Prytania caused me quite the dilemma trying to decide who to keep my eyes on. The superb drum technic by King was an absolute pleasure to watch. Behind the simplest drum kit, King brought the mesmerizing drum beats. I've been calling him as one of the best drummers alive, and I don't think I overstate by saying that. Paul Meany's vibrant stage performance with his various keys and high-pitched raspy voice were hard to miss. Meany was very engaging with the audience while indulging himself in walking on the crowd. The new addition of the band, Todd Gummerman fit right in the band with his musical talent of multitasking on various instruments, including his guitar and keys. Last, but not at least, the bassist, Roy Mitchell-C├írdenas's spectacular bass lines may have been hidden in the shade of others, but the uniqueness in Mutemath's sound can be only completed with his mind-blasting rhythm line. 

As I am one of the biggest Mutemath fans in Toronto, I sang along with all the tunes and danced my butt off. The ending of the song was nothing but outrageous. Spotlights triggered the loudest and fastest hand crapping by the audience. The tempo was so fast that my hands got so tired after a while. As Meany stretched his arms up in the air along with the chorus of the song, the confetti bazooka fired up. When the members came back on the stage with the last tune of the night, Quarantine, I knew something breathtaking would happen. Meany jumped in the crowed and sang off the stage, while migrating from one spot to another. Once I thought he came back on the stage, he crowd-surfed with a big black boat   on the crowd. Then King brought a snare drum on the top of keyboard and started jamming on the keyboard. Once he came back to his drum set, Meany, King, and Cardenas started banging on the drum, while Gummerman picked up his guitar pedals and crafted electronic beams along with the jam. “Oh My God”, was the only words that I was able to speak after witnessing such a creative and lively show. Mutemath- Please don't take another 5 years to be back in Toronto. Come back soon.

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