Constantines Commodore Ballroom
written by Rea Raven
As the Constantines made their way to the stage at Vanouver’s Commodore Ballroom, you can hear feedback as the volume level finds its natural place, hands raise into the air from the predominantly twenty-thirty-something audience and they start to clap.
Singer Bryan Webb gets the show started with a high kick and briefly strumming his guitar while its behind his head, and the band follows suit as they jam together in perfect unison. As the set list progress its obvious the band are enjoying themselves – stomping their feet to echo the intense drum beat as it introduces the next new song.
Amid the bright lights, catchy guitar hooks and rapid chord changes are easily recognizable by the audience made up of nearly all fans of the band, and we chant along with the choruses at every opportunity. The band takes a brief respite to introduce themselves, thanking us for dancing and singing along and allowing them to be as engaged with us as we are with them.
Mid-setlist, the guitar amp skipped a beat, but they got it back on track with little lost. After one song, Webb tells us that he feels the experience he is having, is just beautiful and brought a tear to his eye. Not something you often hear a frontman say! On to the next song and a tambourine shakes back and forth, adding a new element. A song about hard feelings – and the tambourine intensifies the mood of the song.
Someone from the crowd yells, asking them to play a song they’d already played, but they couldn’t be fooled, “We just played that one, but it is a good song!” Guess some people weren’t incredibly sober, perhaps, or maybe they were brought to another world and missed the earlier rendition!
A slower ballad brought out the rumblings of talking in the background by people in the crowd unfortunately.. but the band kicked it back up a notch and the talking ended… which is how it should be!
Will and Steve shared playing guitar and keyboard with each other as they often do, and worked their way in to a five minute instrumental breakdown with the entire band sounding tight. The ending came with another fast paced, head bobbing song which had the audience again with hands raised in the air.. The band matching our hands raised in unison and we all held the moment together then it was time for them to walk off stage amid cheers, stomping of feet (which on the Commodore’s famous bouncing wood floor sounds like thunder crashing), and the band had no choice but come back immediately for an encore. Drummer Doug brought the beat back first… and the band followed suit as their last songs rocked the Commodore, just as we knew they would.
all photos courtesy Rea Raven, click for larger image
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