Island Stage, Guelph ON, July 27

Photo: Atsuko Kobasigawa

BY Sarah MurphyPublished Jul 28, 2014

Clad in black and white, right down to singer/guitarist Tim Beeler's stocking feet and drummer Tim Keen's Nu Sensae tank, Ought took the Island Stage looking significantly younger than they sound. The fresh-faced four-piece blitzed through songs off their debut LP, More Than Any Other Day, and though most of their songs are on the longer side with repetitive instrumental breakdowns, they know how to pull them off live.

The album's almost-titular track "Today More Than Any Other Day," kicked the set off, with Beeler easily winning over unsure audience members with his enthusiasm about the milk of human kindness and milk-related grocery shopping dilemmas. Album standouts like "Forgiveness" and "Habit" were just as impressive live.

Beeler was a delight to watch, his voice wavering between that of Ian Curtis and Gordon Gano; he even had an anecdote about his Hillside-branded water bottle, which was apparently picked up at a thrift shop over a year ago before the band had ever even been to the festival. The only disappointing part of the show came when promises of a new song were dashed by time restrictions, leaving the set to close with "Gemini," which was delivered with the ferocity of a finale anyway.

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