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The Great Danes: Mew @ Cabaret Juste Pour Rire, Dec. 5

Posted by Gabby / December 7, 2009

Let me put it this way: if you haven't heard of Mew, the Danish thunderstorm-pop-slash-indie-prog-rock wonder, you are seriously missing out. They have been touring the world for the past few months supporting their latest album, "No More Stories Are Told Today..." (the original title is a few lines longer).

The opening band was Montreal locals Adam and the Amethysts. I'm not going to spend a whole lot of time on them, because to be completely honest, I found them awkward and very bland, sometimes even a little cheesy. The bass was way too strong with hardly anything to balance it out, and it gave me a massive headache.

Then Mew came on and my headache disappeared magically, even though they opened with one of their crazier songs, "Circuitry of the Wolf", and jumped right into "Chinaberry Tree", both from their 2006 album And the Glass Handed Kites.

I am pleased to report that unlike what the people sitting next to me were saying, Jonas Bjerre's voice is in no way, shape or form off-key. In fact, I daresay his falsetto, which has been described as sounding half-elf half-crying banshee, is perfect. When he went into "The Zookeeper's Boy", it was just purely amazing.

And it got even better when giraffes showed up on the screen. The members met in film school, so it's no wonder that all their projected animations are home-made. That also includes the demonic white-eyed dogs during "Apocalypso" and the creepy tête-à-claques children clapping during "Sometimes Life Isn't Easy".

Mew isn't one of those quiet, collected bands. They dash around, bang their heads to the wild beats... except for the singer. I totally understand that he would have to stand still to belt out such high notes without breaking glass. In a strange way, his delicate voice is perfectly balanced with the cathartic violence of the melodies and drums.

They encored with "Am I Wry? No", "156" and "Louise Louisa", which are great songs in and of themselves, but I only wish they could have ended with "Comforting Sounds". Then they would have breached the top 3 on my personal Best Shows of All Time list.

Picture provided by yours truly with a camera that really needs to be replaced.

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