The Besnard Lakes at Sail Inn

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After watching the Besnard Lakes hour-long set at the Sail Inn on Friday night I thought to myself, that had the Montreal band been around in the '70s they may have been one of the biggest bands in the world.

I say this for a couple reasons. The most obvious reason is the bands music. On the Besnard Lakes third and most recent record The Besnard Lakes are the Roaring Night you can definitely hear a strong '70s influence. And when played live last night the band included plenty of classic rock style guitar solos. Then there is Besnard Lakes frontman Jace Lasek, who took to the stage last night wearing a black western shirt, orange-tinted glasses and long, shaggy hair and looked like he would fit in nicely with just about '70s era rock band.

Of course the Besnard Lakes were not around during the '70s. But given their performance Friday night and the crowds reaction they may as well have been one the biggest rock bands around today.

The band opened up their set with the song "Like The Ocean, Like The Innocent Pt. 1 & 2" and then went into the almost mandatory we're from Canada and it's really hot in Arizona statement. "My pasty white body is going to be red like a fucking lobster in a few days," said Lasek. Many of the songs the Besnard Lakes played came off of Roaring Night but they also managed to include a few standout tracks from their 2007 album The Besnard Lakes are the Dark Horse. In between songs the husband and wife team of Lasek and bassist Olga Goreas managed to keep the crowd entertained with some playful bickering.

Despite a few technical difficulties early on and Olga Goreas struggling with almost losing her voice (nothing a shot of gin didn't fix) the Besnard Lakes put on great show. The band has an epic sound that easily won over the audience. Although, given the crowds enthusiasm throughout the shown it seemed as if they had already been won over well before they showed up at the Sail Inn.

Critics Notebook:

Last Night: Futurekind, Gospel Claws, Happy Hollows, and The Besnard Lakes at Sail Inn

Better Than: This was definitely one of the better shows I've seen this year.

Personal Bias: The Besnard Lakes are the Dark Horse was one of my favorite albums of 2007.

One More Thing: Does anyone else feel bad for the people who live in the apartments behind Sail Inn? I'm sure living behind a music venue sounds cool at first but that must suck after a while.

Further Listening: Volume I, The Besnard Lakes' 2003 debut.

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