Live Review: Please don’t make this smoke go away

White Rabbits Play Lee's Palace In Toronto White Rabbits @ Lee’s Palace, April 27
By: Sheena Lyonnais
May 2, 2010

There are few bands I’ve romanticized in recent history more so than White Rabbits.  The Brooklyn, New York based six-piece have an extremely energy-driven, sometimes haunting tension about them, a presence that is illuminated by the booming sounds created by having both a drummer and a percussionist.  There was a lot of premeditated hype in my mind, but they surely did not disappoint.

Frontmen Greg Roberts and Stephen Patterson share dualing indie melodies and, at times, frantic almost-chanting rock’n’roll, that exceeds on stage anything it produces on record.  Swaying between tracks off the album that put them on the map, Fort Nightly, and the album that made me fall in love, It’s Frightening, they packed their set with such charisma and a sense of humour it forgave their temporary technical difficulties and never lost it’s momentum despite it. 

Toronto’s Rival Boys paved the way for the night with their handsome minimalistic indie rock sounds heightened by the sound of Lee Rose’s lovely vocals.  They have at times the sweetness of a lost artist that they quickly convert into a highly enthusiastic performance beyond the sounds expected from a trio.  While I thoroughly enjoyed them, the anticipation for White Rabbits was no secret throughout the venue.

White Rabbits Live in Toronto At Lee's PalaceThe thing about White Rabbits is they know how to work together, whether it’s when playing softer tracks like the amorous “Company I Keep” or the amped up intensity of tracks like “Percussion Gun,” they never lose their spirit, in fact, they refreshingly play off of each other and build their performance based around this chemistry.  It makes for an enigmatic, unforgettable show that promises greater things. This is not a band to miss.

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