NXNE Review: Camouflage Nights & The Ghost is Dancing
North-by-North-East always brings you ups and downs. Ups because you get to go crazy/nuts over an act that's going to make you ask for a clean pair of shorts (Handsome Furs, Creature, Champion, Thunderheist). Downs because some bands just leaving you handing when they seem promising enough....on paper.
That being said, North-by-North East 2007 began Thursday night with me heading over to Sneaky Dee's to see newly-signed electro-soul artists, Camouflage Nights. My expectations of this band were a funky dance party with movement, ass-shaking and hell of a lot of eye-contact. Though the songs were polished off nicely and sounded of professionally calibre, the band failed to bring me to any kind of high. Hearing 'It Could Be Love' for the first time a few years ago, I was jumping to the beats and loving how catchy the song was. Then, after so long, seeing them live wasn't much of an impressive output. The band stood still and seemed somewhat rigid. Granted, there were some technical problems, but they were easily solved. Other than that, there wasn't much of an excuse to say that the set had the potential to be a lot more electric.
The Ghost is Dancing spent a lot of time on the Toronto Islands recording their new record 'The Darkest Spark'. Betting it'll sound good, and knowing their live show is entertaining, I stayed for their set. I really enjoy the energy The Ghost is Dancing brings. A unison band that pulls out all the stops from guitars to keys, percussion to brass, strings to vox, The Ghost is Dancing have gotten better over time like a fine TV show. It was always about the hands in the air almost every few seconds. I suppose that's what makes being on stage so much fun. Aside from the collective indie-pop persuasion going on about on stage, it was turning around and looking at the crowd of faces, smiling and dancing. To me, connecting with the audience using your art form is success. Usually it depends on the degree of euphoria, but The Ghost is Dancing have the potential to reach higher (even higher) levels of euphoria with their uplifting form of band-rock.
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