Photos / Review: We Are Scientists, Liam & Me @ Sonar (2008.11.11)


Photo credit: Greg Szeto

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MP3: We Are Scientists – The Great Escape

This is going to be brief as I have a lot on my plate and in my mind.

I don’t think it’s possible for We Are Scientists to not have, and as a corollary not be, fun in performance.  It’s etched into their personalities, and thankfully this fun-loving trait is shared with a sizable contingent of their fervent fan-base.

For a Tuesday night, the club stage of Sonar was decently filled.  But I firmly maintain that everything is about quality and not quantity.  Judged on that basis, the Scientists should be really proud of the fanatics they have gathered around them.  Lead singer Keith Murray was even working their own merch table, with a line of eager fans waiting to chat, consume and take pictures with him.  Such is the level of their down-to-earthy-ness.

Openers Liam & Me are a catchy bunch of prototypical pop-punkers with a penchant for big sweeping rock gestures and affectations.  A nice, bubbling mixture of pop-punk and, synth-laden new wave that recalls any number of immensely popular national and local bands in the tweens, Fall-Out Boy/All Time Low segment, yet somehow keeps things a level above the dreck despite the somewhat derivative feel of their sound.

Bonus points for stage presence.

We Are Scientists don’t mess around…by messing around.  Their hilarious, improvised banter is key to enjoying their live show.  If you can’t appreciate that, you can’t relate to their personalities and by extension their music.  We Are Scientists produce an infinitely catchy, twitchy, dancey racket recalling at once great pop and post-punk.  Rarely, if ever, serious, songs like “Nobody Move Nobody Get Hurt” are unabashed comedically sexualized romps around the dance-floor.  The tracks from their second album Brain Thrust Mastery are a bit more pop-weighted and don’t quite conjure the live energy as songs from the early era.  Single “After Hours” still works fairly well in the live setting, vocals really soaring.  But in light of the insistent clang and clatter of tracks like “Cash Cow” and the pure glory of “The Great Escape,” few songs from BTM can hope to compare.  Enough chatter.  Good, entertaining, fun show.

End of story.  Picture time.

Liam & Me

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We Are Scientists

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2 Responses to “Photos / Review: We Are Scientists, Liam & Me @ Sonar (2008.11.11)”

  1. pasta says:

    these guys are phenomenal live. great photos greg.

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