Slow Down Molasses Dakota Tavern, Toronto ON, June 21

Slow Down Molasses Dakota Tavern, Toronto ON, June 21
Photo: Tiana Feng
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"I remember them being much mellower," noted Exclaim! photographer (and this reviewer's wingman) Tiana Feng midway through the second song. Seriously, I thought. What a reinvention! Saskatoon-based Slow Down Molasses' 2011 record Walk Into The Sea was a mostly languid, atmospheric and decidedly dreamy affair; although a couple tracks pushed into some hard-rocking territory, both felt like asides from the main event. If this show was any indication, the material on their as-yet-incomplete new album is a whole 'nother thing, indeed. There was nothing mellow about last night's scorching 40-minute set.

Ready, it seems, to take their place alongside acts such as Metric, Stars and the Darcys, Slow Down Molasses wowed the crowded room with a huge stadium-ready sound, colourful presence and a genuine desire to explore the space created by their songs up there onstage. "It seems like we haven't been to Toronto in awhile," reflected frontman (and, full disclosure, occasional Exclaim! contributor) Chris Morin. Though I've seen them here before, truth is, this felt like the first time, all over again. They just feel like a whole new band. I like it.