Decemberists at Olympia in Montreal Concert Review
It's never easy playing on a Monday night, especially when the temperature outside is in the subzero territory and your name reminds the crowd of the beginning of winter. Still, Montreal fans flocked to the Olympia Theater to see The Decemberists perform.
The lights dimmed and a voice was heard from above. The phantom spokesperson presented himself as Sam Adams, a pre-recorded sample of the mayor of Portland. He urged everyone to greet the person to their immediate right and get acquainted. Mr Adams asked us to close our eyes and listen to the sound; The Decemberists then emerged.
Colin Meloy began by singing The Sporting Life from Picaresque before moving into newer music from The King Is Dead including their single, Down By The Water.
Throughout the night, Colin emphasized the importance of communication by interacting with the crowd. He poked fun at our kindness (we are Canadian after all) and tried to win over the bilingual crowd with his high school french. He told us that if he were us, he "wouldn't have left his house to come see his band tonight." But then he realized that "if we were all him, it would be weird."
With the night approaching its end, the audience began to remember about the cold that awaited them outside the Olympia Theater's doors. Colin sympathized with his fans by talking about his upbringing in the cold winters of Montana and then began to sing January Hymn. The Rake's Song saw most of the band on the drums and even with Colin's powerful voice, he couldn't match the thunderous roars they were emitting.
The Decemberists came back for an encore, and after another exchange with the Canadian crowd, Colin joked that he'll "play a pretty song to calm the natives.". Soon after, Meloy told his fans that in order for the next song so work, he would require their participation. He told everyone that when Chris Funk makes a certain hand gesture, everyone would have to "scream like you are getting swallowed by a whale." The Decemberists went on to play an epic version of Mariner's Revenge which felt like a musical. It was a perfect ending to an incredible night.. except the audience wanted more and got the band back on stage for second encore. To end the night, they played June Hymn; it was the perfect way to warm the fans enough before they set out into the cold.
The Decemberists Setlist at Olympia in Montreal
The Sporting Life
Down by the Water
Rise To Me
Won't Want For Love
The Island 1-2-3
Los Angeles, I'm Yours
Rox In The Box
This Is Why We Fight
The Rake's Song
16 Military Wives
Red Right Ankle
Mariner's Revenge Song