Sunday, June 13, 2010

The New Pornographers- Live In Winnipeg

The much anticipated return of the New Pornographers with the complete band hit town last Thursday at the Garrick Theatre and as expected, the band didn't disappoint. The presence of sometime-yet permanent members of the band, Neko Case and Dan Bejar took the band to a higher level expanding the band's setlist and featuring three lead vocalists. The venue wasn't too bad, my daughter and I positioned ourselves dead centre to the stage 3/4 back on the floor that has a slight incline which benefits short people, like ourselves. The sound was adequate, though the vocals could have been up a bit more, but it was quite listenable. I took a lot of photos, because I knew most of them would be blurry and to my surprise some of them were half decent, at least good enough to post here.
  • Hearing Neko Case with the band is a highlight on it's own, but the bonus was hearing her belt out Letter From An Occupant for the last song of the encore was magical. I've only seen them play that song once before in Winnipeg.
  • Kurt's "drum" solo, which was an impromptu version of "Wipeout". This was a lot looser show than the last 3 times they played here. When Neko's not playing with them, the shows are much more "machine-like" with little or no between song banter.
The only disappointment of the evening was my audio recording came out crappy. I fiddled with the sound levels on my recorder and noticed my adjustments had no effect on level meter (I'm still kind of new to this recorder), so I left it on mid. When I got home to listen to the recording, the volume was low and the sound was fluttery and muffled, cutting in and out occasionally. I realized I had (unintentionally) set the level control on auto, thus preventing me from adjusting on the fly and it kept the sound at an even output eliminating the high and low ranges. It must have been automatically cutting out when the volume peaked too much, instead of distorting if it wasn't set to auto. I listened to the whole show at work and if you crank the sound and listen on speakers it's listenable. I'm still upset over my mistake and I believe it or not, I'm especially hard on myself when a potentially excellent recording is ruined by a dumb error. Oh well, I have lots of other NP shows, but I was looking forward to sharing songs from the new album performed live. As a consolation, I'll be on the look out for more shows from their current tour (If anyone has any to share let me know!) and I'll post my favourite Winnipeg New Pornographers show later today.

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