Luna / Midnight Movies Richards On Richards, Vancouver BC - February 12

Luna / Midnight Movies Richards On Richards, Vancouver  BC - February 12
"We ate at Tim Horton's for lunch," commented Dean Wareham, Luna's front-man, who is looking more and more like Jeff Tweedy these days. The crowd didn't seem to hear him, being too busy shouting out song titles beneath the ozone layer from an energetic smoke machine. "Smile!," yelled one fan, and Wareham did. Luna has been together for over 12 years now and produced seven albums but are sadly retiring despite their obvious popularity and relevant staying power. While the band's latest album, Rendezvous, was released in 2004, the show in Vancouver was a blessed trip down memory lane, from the opening notes of "Bewitched" to the happy go lucky "Bonnie and Clyde," with the lovely background vocals of bassist Britta Phillips, to their first encore song, "Smile," the set highlighted Luna's most beloved tunes. A rare ocular treat was the band's obvious interest in playing off one another; Wareham, Phillips, guitarist Sean Eden and drummer Lee Wall seemed sincerely interested in creating music and listening to one another on stage, which only made this particular farewell tour all the more bittersweet. The opening band of the night, Midnight Movies, may emerge as one the best opening acts of all time, which only means they won't be opening for long. Drummer/chanteuse Gena Olivier had the ease of someone who must have been born into a genius musical family, hitting her silver sequined drum kit with an apathetic Meg White expression and the confidence of Travis Barker. Together with guitarist Larry Schemel and keyboard/I book operator/bassist Jason Hammons, they were a perfect warm up to Luna, bringing to mind a melding pot of Air, Everything But The Girl, and Portishead while maintaining a unique appeal all their own.