Woodhands The Biltmore Cabaret, Vancouver, BC November 28
Published Nov 30, 2009Plaid shirts, bearded hipsters and women dancing in their bras — these are all brought out of the woodwork during your typical Woodhands show. Their Vancouver stop was no different, with the Toronto-based duo of Dan Werb and Paul Banwatt blasting the Biltmore stage and causing chaotic dancing and chanting of epic rave proportions.
For those who don't already know, front-man Werb is bringing back the keytar. He showed full mastery of synthesizers, drum loops and sound mixers, while spitting out fat, earth-shaking techno riffs with a machine-like exactness. Drummer Banwatt was tweaking just as hard, sweat drenching through his his retro Star Wars T-shirt, demonically pounding his white Pearl set until he actually destroyed his snare.
"Somebody needs to go home right now, and bring your snare drum back to the show," Werb said, sweat dripping down his neck and face, fogging up his black-rimmed glasses. "I guess we're still gonna keep on going though. Fuck yeah!"
When the drum was restored, the group played a new song from their upcoming album Remorsecapade. The song was surprisingly mellow, almost contemplative and borderline ethereal, certainly foreshadowing a progression in their songwriting. Like their name suggests, Woodhands manage to relate the human and organic aspects of music making with their art, despite the heavy electronic theme.
Leaning heavily on 2008's Heart Attack, they also played crowd favourites like "Under Attack" and "I Wasn't Made for Fighting." And of course, things got intense during their electro jams, which were blisteringly loud and cathartic.
Showing unparalleled energy, Woodhands delivered a furious show catering to an ADD-riddled generation, with everything coming out fast, sweaty and catchy as hell.