It’s Gonna Burn Us Alive: Dragonette heats up The Mod Club
August 10, 2010 — A pre-emptive “Woooot!” spread through the crowd. They were anxious. And hot. Everyone was packed tightly into the Mod Club on Tuesday night and all eyes were pointed to the stage anxiously awaiting Dragonette.
The stage was set-up with multicoloured L.E.D. light panels (both cool to look at and environmentally friendly!). The stage layout was interesting: the drums were placed upfront, stage right, and the keyboards and synth were set-up on the opposite side. Both were slightly angled towards the center, where a mic stand proudly stood. Basically, everyone shared the stage in equal standing, suggesting a feelings of equality amongst the band members.
Dan Kurtz, the versatile musician who played keys, bass and synth throughout the show, and Joel Stouffer, the drummer, came out on stage first. They began to play the familiar chord progression for “I Get Around,” the first single from Dragonette’s debut album “Galore.” A long drum and keys intro drove the crowd berserk until frontwoman Martina Sorbara walked onto the stage. The crowd screamed their hearts out for the first verse, and by the chorus, they were matching her strides and energy and seemed to be bopping along in unison to the tempo Sorbara set.
Both of Dragonette’s albums have an array of tempos and poignancy. The set list managed to mix the songs in a way that gave the audience a bit of everything, while still maintaining a steady build and voluntary release. Very flirtatious and sexy, much like Sorbara herself.
Sorbara would play guitar for a few songs, but for the majority of the set her melodic voice was supported by pre-mixed keys and synth tracks. The club style mixes were counteracted by Sorbara’s light and wispy vocals, which, needless to say, adapt easily to the more mellow songs as well.
There was very little commentary between the band and the audience throughout the first three quarters of the show, though Sorbara commented on the heat, and criticized the venue subtly a couple times as well. She also asked an audience member for a hairclip which she held on to for the rest of the show.
During a slower song, the entire venue was lit-up only by the red and blue LED lights on stage, which somehow created a blur effect on the audience’s faces. It was as though everyone should have been wearing 3D glasses to see things clearly.
For the last song (aka, pre-encore) Dragonette played “Fixin’ to Thrill” the title track off their second album. Kurtz wore multi-coloured rings that lit up, and Sorbara finally let her hair down, both figuratively and literally, removing the fan-donated hairclip. She went a little crazy, dancing more vigorously but still singing in her signature calm and melodic tone. The strobe lights combined with her rough angry demeanor had to have made someone blow their proverbial load.
After leaving the stage and returning, the band ended with a strong double encore. One oldie and one new song: “Girlfriend” and “We Rule the World.” Dragonette’s newest release is a re-mix album called “Mixin’ to Thrill” and can be purchased online and in certain stores now.
PHOTOGRAPHY BY GENEVIEVE LUI