St. Vincent WayHome Stage, Oro-Medonte ON, July 26
Published Jul 27, 2015Annie Clark, better known as St. Vincent, is a captivating figure. Though her vocals were a bit low in the mix at the start of her performance (but quickly and thankfully rectified), she still stunned with her stage presence: equal parts alien and robotic, her stone-faced, stiff dance moves oozed charm and poise. Clark also formed a formidable duo with keyboardist/guitarist Toko Yasuda; clad in matching jumpsuits, the pair's synchronized dancing fit the synthetic feel of the songs perfectly, especially as they shuffled robotically up and down the stage during songs without so much as missing a note.
Clark possesses a grace befitting royalty, best demonstrated during set highlight "Cheerleader," which found Clark atop a platform lording over the crowd. Channelling a spirit that was equal parts whimsical and robotic, Clark even delivered something resembling a sermon mid-set as she pleaded to the gods of technology, crafting a unique and impressive concert experience.
Clark was forced to drop the robotic act when the 30-plus-degree heat caused her keyboardist's gear to malfunction. To fill the space, she played a two-song solo guitar set including a cover of the Beatles' "Dig a Pony" and her own "Strange Mercy," both of which felt incredibly human, even off-the-cuff, bringing an overwhelming sense of humanity to her performance.
Though it contrasted with the laser-cut precision of the rest of the set, it underscored how hypnotic a performer she is, and also demonstrated an impressive versatility. Clark and her band delivered a set that took risks in every way, all of which paid off — did we mention that she spent the entirety of set closer "Krokodil" running through the audience manically, high-fiving fans and hugging the camera man before dramatically collapsing onstage?