They Shoot Horses, Don’t They? / Shapes and Sizes / Westfalia The Railway Club, Vancouver BC June 29

Fresh off a national tour with Do Make Say Think, Edmonton’s Westfalia opened the night softly with his warm and fuzzy laptop pop. Though few were paying much attention, the set helped establish a mood for the evening. They Shoot Horses, Don’t They?’s keyboardist, Chris-A-Riffic, was supposed to play a solo set next, but had to cancel at the last minute, so there was some empty space before Shapes and Sizes took the stage. When they finally did, it was well worth the wait. Mainly focused on their brilliant Split Lips, Winning Hips, A Shiner album, the quartet were explosive. Their guitar and bass tones sounded perfect, and they performed with the type of energy normally reserved for punk bands. From the flawless chaos of their performance to the room-filling sound of their mix, Shapes and Sizes’ set further emphasised their all-around greatness as a band. They Shoot Horses, Don’t They? brought similar passion to the stage with their weirdo circus pop. Despite being a few members short of their last national tour, the Horses played an enthusiastic and jovial set. Mainly comprised of songs from Pick Up Sticks, the set captivated the audience to the point where one long-haired fellow was even head-banging in the front row. Collapsing Opposites, another They Shoot Horses offshoot, played an impromptu set as the night died down, but it was too late in the night for anyone to really pay attention. Showcasing some promising Canadian talent, the show left the Vancouverites with something to be proud of.