Horseshoe Tavern in Toronto, ON
November 11, 2010
Photos and Review by: Pete Nema
With release of their new EP entitled Control on November 2nd, Clothes Make The Man got together with their musical friends Teenage Kicks to celebrate at the Horseshoe.
Clothes Make The Man
If you asked me prior to the show at Horseshoe Tavern, I would have told you that I hadn't seen Clothes Make The Man before. Of course, I knew that wasn't entirely true because I did see them perform as part of a Nirvana covers night at Sneaky Dee's, a night where Ryan McLennan (vocals, guitar) did an amazing job exposing his inner-Kurt. However, one of my friends pointed out that wasn't my only encounter, and my previous blog backed up the assertion — Clothes Make The Man opened a very memorable night with Hey Rosetta! back in April of 2009. Yes, I had forgotten that opening band's name, but hadn't forgotten their performance.
So, now 18 months later, and the band has some great new material, an even stronger stage presence, and a sound that draws from hard rock, but also contains a few radio-friendly pop melodies. McLennan is able to shift his vocals between gruff and clean, which he uses to rough up or smooth out portions of the songs, adding ear-pleasing variance. Similarly with the music, Scott Henry (guitar), Ross Machon (bass), and drummer Phil Wilson (who, in our interview with Clothes Make The Man, the other band members claim they picked up from Craigslist) produce an aura of hard rock in which edges appear and disappear, often within the same song.
Their set at the Horseshoe was solid and steady, not out of control, not overly exuberant, but something worth seeing again. The next opportunity to catch Clothes Make The Man is on Saturday, December 11th at the Audio Blood Holiday 2 Night Stand at Rivoli.
Hitting the stage a little earlier than expected, but still a fairly optimal time for the night, Teenage Kicks played through a bunch of material I'd never heard before save for one song, the excellent rock number, "Shook Our Bones." Their music fit in well with the night, also rooted in hard rock, but leaning more toward classic rock, and less edgy. Big sounds, decent set.