Typically, I’d be the first person to admit my strong dislike for pop music, especially electropop music; it simply sounds all the same to me. However, all of this changed Nov. 9 when Toronto natives Dragonette took the stage at Maxwell’s in support of their new studio album, Royal Blues, released Nov. 11.
The night began with the opening act Lowell who is, to say the least, an acquired taste. While her voice was impressive, her musical style and lyrics were … interesting. Admittedly, there did seem to be a few Lowell fans in the room so maybe it was just me, but I could not get onboard with the obscure melodies and sounds coming from the stage. What really disappointed me though was her crowd interaction. It was difficult to understand what she was saying most of the time due to some mumbling on her part and this made her seem very disinterested with the crowd. With that being said, I still encourage you to check out her music and make up your own mind on Lowell.
After that first performance I grew more hesitant, wondering what a full-blown electropop show would be like. But, as soon as Dragonette took the stage, all my doubts were gone. With the most intense light show, and incredible multi-talented musicians, Dragonette put on a high-energy show that kept the approximate 300 people on their feet and dancing the entire night. The band showcased their remarkable skills, with members Dan Kurtz and Joel Stouffer jumping from bass and drums respectively to the DJ booth set up at the back of the stage. The most notable aspect though, had to have been lead vocalist Martina Sorbara’s voice. Despite all of her dancing and attempts at different character impressions such as Eeyore from Winnie the Pooh, she never missed a beat and never failed to keep her voice in perfect range all evening.
Dragonette’s interaction with the crowd was much better as they made sure to also keep the audience laughing the entire night, saying things like, “Are you screaming because I said something or because you actually know the song?” They even asked if everyone was able to see and hear okay, proving that they are a band who cares about their fans and genuinely wants to put on a great performance. To top it all off, they performed a wide variety of songs from some of their first hits like “I Get Around” to new ones like “Sweet Poison” and, of course, the oh-so-popular “Hello,” creating a perfectly balanced setlist for fans.
So, if there is anyone out there who thinks the same way as I did and cynically doubts the talent of the musicians within this genre, go to a Dragonette concert. I guarantee that you will change your mind.