|Michou, We Are The Take
The Horseshoe Tavern in Toronto, ON
February 26, 2010
Review by: Natalia Buia
Photos by: Darren Eagles
It was Michou’s first time performing down at the ol’ Horseshoe and they made it pretty loud and clear they were happy to finally be there.
You may recognize these young and hip dudes riding on bikes in their music video “Growing Younger” which has been getting a lot of airplay on MuchMusic and its counterpart, MuchMoreMusic. A definite contrast to the previous band on stage, The Matavaras, this Windsor foursome sound a lot more pop than folk these days but there’s no arguing about their buoyant stage presence. You could tell within minutes that their sole purpose on stage isn’t just to impress girls but to make people get up and move. Knowing how to start off on a good note, Michou generously gave away free CDs: four sample songs off their recent album Cardona. They kicked off their youthful set with “Eavesdropping”, their second single. Right off the bat, the band has amazing energy that lasted throughout their rather short set. This comes as no surprise when you see Sasha Appler (keys) go from playing the xylophone to jumping off stage doing push-ups. As he’s belting out romantic lyrics, Michael Hargreaves (guitar, vocals) has enough charm, sensitivity, and decent amount of good looks to make Conor Oberst jealous. All the girls in the crowd seemed smitten, especially when he snagged the stage all to himself to serenade with “Still Wandering”. Along with playing songs off Cardona, the band belted out a few tunes from their 2008 full length debut Myshkin before they capped the night off with their most popular song, “Growing Younger”; a song everyone seemed eager to hear.
We Are The Take
Radio friendly rockers We Are The Take seized the stage with “Explode” to hot, hot, hot reactions from the crowd. By the time the song was over, the checkered dance floor was packed with good intention. The amazing turnout is kind of expected. Whether you’re a fan of their musical style or not, you can’t deny that these guys play their heart out every show. Clearly, this is a band that cranks their amp to eleven (har har har). We Are The Take claim “we innovate, we’ll make you shake” and everyone did just that until the wee hours. What a way for this former hermit to spend a Friday night. Notable performances included “Tenderhooks” and “It’s Over”. The highlight of my night at first was watching Erik Alcock (vocals, guitar) playing with so much enthusiasm and love for his instrument. He literally poured every ounce of sweat into each song. However, this immediately slipped into second best thing once both Michou and We Are The Take crammed on stage, merrily covering “The Night They Drove Old Dixie Down” by The Band. It stuck in my head for a good few hours after the show. Besides catchy, dancefloor-worthy songs, We Are The Take also mastered the art of (for a lack of better words) slow jams. Dare I even call them ballads? Their newest song “Wasting Time” which they’ve only played once before was quite harmonious. Hearing them play “Montreal Love Song” was another nice break from all the faster, poppier songs. Although extremely fun to listen to live, at times they can all sound the same. Still, We Are The Take are taking every stage by storm. Don’t just listen to their music alone in your bedroom – check them out live, you’ll definitely get your money’s worth.