The Weakerthans: Live at the Burton Cummings Theatre (Anti)

 |   |  1 min read

The Weakerthans: One Great City
The Weakerthans: Live at the Burton Cummings Theatre (Anti)

Anyone who has travelled around Canada with the car stereo flipping across the dial will discover that whole new world of rock, folk, pop and alt.music which exists north of the place which so often dominates our airwaves.

The Weakerthans from Winnipeg have an understandably loyal following in their home territory for their literate, often melancholy version of alt.folk-meets-indie.rock,  and with weeping pedal steel they can conjure up those vast spaces between places and people. No surprise then that they have strong connections with the Broken Social Scene collective.

This impressive live album (with an accompanying DVD) sees the four-piece band with an expanded line-up which includes multi-instrumentalists adding trumpet, violin, keyboards and backing vocals behind singers Stephen Carroll, John Samson and bassist Greg Smith.

This makes for a big sound but one that never loses sight of the song: and what great songs too. Sometimes they bring to mind the Replacements and other times the mid-period power-chord Who, at others singers along the alt.country axis like the Mountain Goats, Willard Grant Conspiracy or Richmond Fontaine. Very good company.

in One Great City they deliver "I hate Winnipeg" to an appreciative crowd (but they don't really), and you have to like a band which can pen a title like Our Retired Explorer (Dines with Michel Foucault in Paris in 1969). Or, This is a Fire Door Never Leave Open.

Paste magazine said if there was a Pulitzer for a back-beat and buzzing power chords these people would be a leading candidate, and the New York Times noted that Death Cab for Cutie fans could like this, and that the Weakerthans had songs full of character and tunes that stick.

Can't add much to that.

Discover these people for yourself. You won't regret it if those references above resonate with you. 

Share It

Your Comments

Evan St. Jasthane - Apr 13, 2010



The Weakerthans are a great band that write thoughtful, insightful and intelligent lyrics. A very under-rated band

post a comment

More from this section   Music articles index

Various: Motown Love (Motown/Universal)

Various: Motown Love (Motown/Universal)

This triple-disc set suffers from the same problem as the previously released and quite dreadful Motown 50 collection: an unacceptable and unnatural inclusion of Michael Jackson/Jackson 5 and Diana... > Read more

THE BEST OF ELSEWHERE 2014: THE EDITOR'S CHOICES

THE BEST OF ELSEWHERE 2014: THE EDITOR'S CHOICES

At a very rough guess Elsewhere probably reviewed or wrote about more than 200 albums in the past year . . . and we certainly didn't get to many excellent ones simply by constraints of time.... > Read more

Elsewhere at Elsewhere

BRUCE SPRINGSTEEN AND THE E STEET BAND: LONDON CALLING; LIVE IN HYDE PARK (Sony DVD)

BRUCE SPRINGSTEEN AND THE E STEET BAND: LONDON CALLING; LIVE IN HYDE PARK (Sony DVD)

Already a global chart-topper, this double disc DVD not only captures Springsteen and band in concert in June '09, but also acts as an emblem for how much people identify with the man and his... > Read more

COBAIN: MONTAGE OF HECK, a film by BRETT MORGEN

COBAIN: MONTAGE OF HECK, a film by BRETT MORGEN

In the final third of this sometimes uneven but always fascinating two-hour documentary about Kurt Cobain there is considerable previously unseen home footage. There we see Cobain, his wife... > Read more