Minotaurs Main Stage, Guelph ON, July 24

Minotaurs Main Stage, Guelph ON, July 24
Photo: Sarah Murphy
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It may have helped that the band hails from Hillside's home of Guelph, but Minotaurs could undoubtedly get a crowd moving, regardless of location. "We came here today to make some noise," frontman Nathan Lawr declared early in the set, and the ten-piece ensemble proceeded to do just that. Boasting a brass section, two guitarists, three percussionists and some keys and bass for good measure, the group grooved through a set of funky, genre-defying songs that incorporate elements of Afrobeat, indie rock, soul and even tinges of electro.

Clearly not restricted by their business casual attire, everyone on stage moved along with the increasingly uninhibited crowd, though Lawr stole the show with his wild gesticulations and exuberant singing. Lisa Conway of Del Bel came on stage for a couple of songs, the latter for which she was also joined by the Weather Station's Tamara Lindeman. And while the that cameo-heavy tune served as the set's last, it was a fine opening to the weekend, delivering a healthy dose of the collaborative spirit and feel-good energy that Hillside is known for.