Overall, if you haven’t seen Passion Pit before, you are not alone, but you are missing out.
Electric mixes set to big beats make this band a must-see. However, last night’s venue was a poor pick because the Vogue Theatre, with its velvet movie seats and upper balcony, is much more live play than dance party.
This didn’t stop the crowd though, and dancing people packed into all free areas of space from the stage up into the aisles in what must have been the fire hazard to end all fire hazards.
Gyrating with energy and dance moves, Passion Pit finally burst onto the stage with I’ve Got Your Number.
Lead singer Michael Angelakos and his band mates Ian Hultquist (keyboards/guitar), Ayad Al Adhamy (synth/samples), Jeff Apruzzese (bass/synth bass) and Nate Donmoyer (drums), played all their popular tracks to a spastic crowd, including my personal favourite, To Kingdom Come.
Band-to-audience chatter was minimal throughout their set until Angelakos admitted that he had forgotten the words to the song he was singing. He had just started the first few sentences of Little Secrets before stopping mid-sentence to say that he’s not singing this song in Vancouver without knowing the lyrics. In what might have been a clever ploy to talk to cute girls, he asked the crowd for help. He said that he has played this song 400 to 500 times live and has never forgotten the words. Comically, two seconds later he was borrowing a black smart phone from someone in the crowd and kept it up on his keyboard for reference.
An unusual intermission to say the least, but Passion Pit soon got back their momentum and its audience, with everyone singing, “I am, I am, I am” along with Angelakos throughout the rest of the flubbed song.
Musicians, like all people, should be able to make mistakes, and like Angelakos said, “Sh*# happens,” but shortly after the lyrical mishap he said that he was tired and this unfortunately set the tone for the rest of the set.
The crowd held on until the very end when they played their big hit Sleepyhead during the encore, but overall the show was good – not great, fun – but not freaking-amazing. When seeing a favourite band live, one hopes to be taken beyond the track listing. The band should be better on stage, instead of just as good as playing the CD.
Even though there was a bonding moment when the lead singer played his own game of Don’t Forget the Lyrics, this wasn’t enough to really engage the audience and rock their rain-soaked socks off. Like Angelakos said, they are not going to be back in Vancouver for a while, so it’s too bad that their latest impression wasn’t a passionate one.
Odd things of note: The Passion Pit mic was all white like an iPod, Angelakos had a small towel just for his hair sweat, the security guy onstage had lips like Angelina Jolie and I don’t think that girl ever got her phone back.