Maxwell’s hosted their last concert of 2017 with a New Year’s extravaganza that might also be considered their first concert of 2018.

The night’s festivities starred Halifax rockers Sloan, the classic alternative rock band and mainstay of the Canadian indie scene.

Their set was punctuated by a break and accompanied by DJ Cloudy Cuts and his spins before, after, and between their sets. About halfway through their second set, they paused as midnight approached and the room counted down to the New Year in unison.

Right after, they played the classic Scottish New Year’s ballad Auld Lang Syne to lay 2017 to rest before finishing with some of their biggest songs and ending with the one-song encore of “If It Feels Good Do It.”

Like some musical Albus Dumbledore, bearded and grey-maned lead guitarist Patrick Pentland took stage right with an array of interesting guitars and pedals, including one with dice for dials that caught my fancy.

Next to him was bassist Chris Murphy and then rhythm guitarist Jay Ferguson holding down the fort on stage left.

In the back, the band was anchored by drummer Andrew Scott in circular glasses and a military cap, and touring addition Gregory Macdonald on other percussion and keyboards. Each member contributed to vocals, and as they are known to do, Sloan frequently swapped their lineup based on the writer of each song: Scott would rotate to guitar, Ferguson would play bass, and Murphy would switch to drums.

The show featured hits like “Who Taught You To Live Like That?”, “People of the Sky”, “Everything You’ve Done”, “The Other Man”, and “Underwhelmed”, which was definitely not how the crowd left at the end of the concert.

A revelation of the night was that Sloan had just earlier that day finished mastering a new album and that they would be touring throughout 2018 in support of it, a treat for fans thirsty for new material.




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