Bloc Party

Scène Verte, Montreal QC, July 29

Bloc PartyScène Verte, Montreal QC, July 29
Photo: Rick Clifford
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It's rare to see a festival setup work against a performing act, much less Osheaga veterans like Bloc Party.
 
While the band's latest album Hymns strays from their trademark raucous indie rock, focusing instead on a quieter, more reserved sound, Bloc Party are nonetheless known for their live shows — lead singer Kele Okereke's undeniable charisma and penchant for drumming up multiple mosh pits is a consistent element in each performance.
 
This afternoon performance, however, felt stifled by the band's time constraints, as well as the crowd surfing limitations. With a big fairground attraction spinning stage right, Bloc Party moved through their career-spanning set with ease, with favourites like "Helicopter" and "Banquet" setting the crowd jumping and singing along. Shortly after dedicating a song to the impending doom of Donald Trump, the compact crowd was soaked by an extremely powerful super soaker for a couple of minutes, prompting Okereke to ask "the hose guy" to stop what he's doing, saying "they don't need that right now, man, enough."
 
Noticing that the momentum he had built throughout the last 30 minutes had lost some of its spark, Okereke stated "apologies if I'm not being as chatty as usual, we have some strict timelines today. But you know what? Less words, more action." Finishing their set on a high note with a few older tracks, Bloc Party tried their best, but weren't able to rise to the challenge of topping their previous Osheaga performances.

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