Replace “stoner rock” with “bourbon-soaked” and you have Whalebones, who opened the show sounding like Seattle’s answer to Black Mountain. Surprisingly good, Whalebones exuded the kind of intense emotion usually seen in more seasoned bluesy bands.
Frog Eyes weren’t entirely impressive unless they were playing something loud and catchy. Anything remotely mellow just sounded like sound check, as the milling of the crowd could be heard above much of Carey Mercer’s frenetic vocals. Both he and Spencer Krug, doing double duty that night with Frog Eyes and Wolf Parade, hyperactively entertained but failed to command the audience for a chunk of their lengthy set.
Thankfully, Wolf Parade took no time at all entering a room full of ravenous fans that were treated with two killer new songs and one EP-worthy tune. These guys are pretty ridiculous in delivering exactly what you hear on record, with the addition of sweaty enthusiasm and unwavering energy. “We Built Another World” and “Dear Sons and Daughters of Hungry Ghosts” were like kicks in the head, and Dan Boeckner and co-vocalist Krug’s warbled shouts could be heard from the alley outside. By show’s end, shirts came off and bands jumped on stage to beat the crap out of any stillness anyone had left in them. It’s refreshing to finally see a band live through spotty live reviews and prove they’re so popular for a reason.