Toronto 06 Review
Lee’s Palace, Toronto ON – May 27, 2006
By Stuart Green
July 05, 2006
If there’s a more suave, sophisticated and just plain cool front-man than Greg Dulli, I’ll smoke my CD collection. Not since Bryan Ferry crooned a ‘Song for Europe’ swirling a snifter of brandy while wearing a white tuxedo jacket with a cigarette dangling from his lips has rock seen such a debonair character. Dulli’s super-coolness was on display in spades this night. From the moment the roadies lit the candelabra perched atop Dulli’s amp and placed sticks of incense at strategic points on the stage, you knew this wasn’t going to be just another club show. Touring in support of their fourth album, Powder Burns, the Twilight Singers finally had the decency to travel north of the border to lay their moody, edgy post-punk vibe on us. And it was definitely worth the wait. The 90-minute set was heavy on material from the hauntingly brilliant Powder Burns but didn’t forsake the first three records either. Guitarist/vocalist Dulli was joined by four backing players, who created a sound as big as a hundred men. As Dulli flouted the province-wide smoking ban and slow-danced with a lucky female audience member, promising to be her boyfriend for the evening, the grateful who have been patiently waiting to catch this juggernaut live were handsomely rewarded. The band made only a passing reference to Dulli’s previous band, the criminally under-appreciated Afghan Whigs, when Dulli inserted lyrics from (funnily enough) ‘Debonair’ into the TS song ‘Papillion.’ And just to show how in touch with the times and appreciative of a great song Dulli is, the encore included a cover of the Gnarls Barkley breakout hit ‘Crazy,’ given a rocking but reverent pass. Indie rock doesn’t get any cooler or any better than this. Come to think of it, neither does modern mainstream rock.