Modest Mouse WayHome Stage, Oro-Medonte ON, July 25

Modest Mouse WayHome Stage, Oro-Medonte ON, July 25
Photo: Geoff Fitzgerald
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Perpetually destined to play the suppertime slot at festivals, Modest Mouse entertained the crowd with a set that focused heavily on their recently released Strangers to Ourselves and mainstream breakthrough Good News For People Who Love Bad News. Due to the sheer size of the band — eight people — they were able to focus on crafting the expansive studio sound of their later work, bringing each song to a bold, fervent climax, even to those who weren't afforded one in the studio, like Good News' hillbilly bruiser "The Devil's Workday."
 
Frontman Isaac Brock did what he does best, playing guitar or banjo while howling, spitting, and yelping with all his might. There was a bit of his trademark idiosyncrasy in there too, when decided to hold a mug while performing before realizing that it probably wasn't the best idea, and when he played guitar with his mouth during "Doin' the Cockroach." Though his antics were a fun touch, the tunes were par for the course; though lack of familiarity with the new material was reflected in the crowd's reaction, the tunes were still well-executed. Ultimately, Modest Mouse found strength in numbers for a decent set.