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Music

Krista Muir/Shane Watts Band at Cagibi

Posted by Olivier / March 16, 2008

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Do you like a slickly produced show, packed with throngs of people dancing in the dark? Then don't go to the Cagibi, a Bar/Restaurant/Cafe/Performance Venue on St. Viateur. The brightly lit, eclectically decorated venue is low on pretension, frills, and people under 25, and loaded with folksy charm. Appropriately enough, so was the performance of Krista Muir on Saturday night.

It's hard to say if Muir was simply adjusting to her surroundings, but her performance on Saturday was as casual as having a friend play in your living room. She was so at ease that a forgotten lyric or a misplayed note was nothing but an opportunity for a laugh with the audience. This confidence isn't surprising given Muir's previous incarnation as Lederhosen Lucil, an alter-ego that toured for years with success in Europe and North America. She has now shed the over-the-top character for a folksy, ukulele-centered musical re-birth.

I have to point out that, just as "guy with guitar" reached it's saturation point in the music industry a long time ago, "girl with ukulele" is also starting to wear a little thin. There is just something about a ukulele that does not make for particularly powerful live performances, unless it's used sparingly and in tandem with other instruments. In fact, Muir's best peformance on Saturday may have been a song she wrote in Greek, played on an interesting string/synthesizer-type contraption. Even Muir's most arresting song, the beautiful "Leave Alright", sounds better on the recording than in concert. However, she did have a great cover version of David Bowie's "As the World Falls Down" from the Labyrinth soundtrack, and the ukulele did add a nice touch to the cover. Unfortunately, no Labyrinth quotes were included. You remind me of the babe...

The Shane Watt Band included Krista Muir, and their set of songs were enjoyable if not harmless acoustic ballads that left me in a pleasant mood as I left Cagibi. Shane Watt and especially Muir are warm and friendly performers, and, while It was the anti-thesis of an adrenaline-inducing Saturday night, considering I start my St. Patrick's festivities at 8 am Sunday morning, it was probably exactly what I needed.

Photo of Cagibi from spacing.ca

Discussion

14 Comments

John / March 20, 2008 at 04:41 am
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hahaha PLEASE tell me this was written ironically:
"The brightly lit, eclectically decorated venue is low on pretension, frills, and people under 25, and loaded with folksy charm"

To be clear, we are both talking about the Cagibi, the gathering place of Montreal's hipster elite, as displayed in the photograph right?
O / March 20, 2008 at 01:41 pm
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Let's see, I can't vouch for sure that the bald guy in the picture and the other guy with the old navy sweater are "Montreal's hipster elite", but then again, I have a hard time understanding who the "hipsters" are these days. I'd point to the Sala Rossa/Casa del popolo connection as one of the epi-centres of Pop Montreal-type hipsterdom, but Cagibi strikes me more as a place for artsy/folksy types.

Out of curiosity what is your definition of hipster?
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