. : : November 30th, 2012 : : .
Limblifter reunited for a special performance at North By North-East in Toronto supporting of their self-titled debut being reissued on vinyl in June of 2012. It was supposed to be a one-off show, but I guess the band felt some of that old magic, and were back doing a small province-hopping series of shows by late Autumn of the same year.
As a big fan of the band — especially their excellent I/O album, long considered to be their last — there was no way I was going to miss seeing them perform again, given that although they have mixed new material in with the classics, any given performance may be their last.
This time, the significantly larger Lee’s Palace was host to the set, and although I don’t know if I’d go as far as to say it was a sell out, it was a better-than-respectable turnout for what is, essentially, a nostalgia act for the late twenty-somethings.
I got their early enough to grab a seat dead centre, in front of the soundboard, and in the first “row” of the elevated level, about eight feet above the dance floor area. This gave me a direct line of sight between the stage/speakers and myself. All ambient noise and distortion caused by being directly behind or beside others is thus not a problem in this recording, and even the applause sounds comparatively distant. Vocals and instruments are all fairly clear, and although this is unlikely to be confused for a SBD recording, it’s definitely a great AUD tape, doing the band justice.
Which is perfect, because the band put on a phenomenal set. Although it didn’t vary terribly in song selection, the additional three or so tracks were great selections, including Jumbo Jet Headache and Alarm Bells from I/O, and a deep cut I’ve never heard performed live the half-dozen or so times I’ve seen the band play previously, Dominant Monkey from their eponymous debut. The band performed with the same energy and intensity that I’d remembered, but perhaps with a bit more confidence than their gig earlier in the spring.
Yeah, okay, maybe it’s the nostalgia talking… but I kind of doubt it. Limblifter is a phenomenal band, and Ryan Dahle‘s smart-songwriting, intricate licks and memorable hooks have lead to the success of many of his ventures, including Limblifter, Age of Electric, his solo material, and his forth-coming collaboration with Hot Hot Heat‘s Steve Bays and Hawksley Workman, called Mounties, which has already developed considerable buzz with a handful of sample songs disseminated through social media sites.
There’s no question in my mind that this tape is a must-have for Limblifter fans. The quality of it is so good, the recording of new song Hotel Knife has seen rotation on Sound FM 100.3 in Waterloo, Ontario — a first for the blog, as far as I know! New fans of the band will get a varied look at samples of the band’s three LPs to date, and if they take into consideration the latest of these is already a decade old, and the oldest more than a decade and a half, I’m sure they’ll find plenty to love.
02. On The Moon
05. Count To 9
07. Perfect Day To Disappear
08. Jumbo Jet Headache
09. Chop Chop [Ryan Dahle]
11. Get Money [tease]
15. Wake Up To The Sun
16. Fiercely Co-Dependent
17. Hotel Knife
18. Screwed Up
20. I Wonder If…
21. Ariel vs. Lotus
23. Alarm Bells
24. Dominant Monkey