The Drums: 16 Oct 2010 – Mod Club, Toronto

Try as I might, heeding those words of advice from front man Jonathan Pierce was difficult. All evening I found myself trying to put my finger on where I heard The Drums before. Or rather, who The Drums sound like. Sort of early-era New Order, a little bit The Smiths, hints of The Strokes; all very British for a band hailing from Brooklyn, NY. It’s no wonder they are attracting so much UK music media attention. Distracted as I may have been playing “name that band” in my mind, it didn’t take away from what I was seeing or hearing on stage. In an hour-long set that felt like mere minutes, the band managed to breeze through an energetic set of catchy songs from their debut release Summertime! capturing the attention of everybody in the sold-out Mod Club.

If it wasn’t the reverby Johnny Mar-esque guitar hooks of Jacob Graham or the commanding drum beat from Connor Hanwick that kept fans riveted, it was Pierce’s flowing dance moves in which his red silk jacket and microphone were constant props. Take your pick. Heads bobbed and hips swayed to “Best Friend”, “Forever and Ever, Amen”, dream-poppy “Submarines” and to the highlight encore performance of “Down By The Water”. It was a performance that was audibly imperfect but not in such a way as to hamper what they were doing up there. It made it the experience more “live” and in hindsight, not worth dissecting after all, but one to enjoy and remember.