Disclosure at Metropolis was bananas

For an hour in Montreal last night, the British duo carried themselves like the biggest band in the world.

IMG_0051 (600x450)
Disclosure at Metropolis. Photo by Pablo Duran

If you were at Metropolis last night for Disclosure’s massively hyped, beyond sold-out Montreal headlining debut, then chances are at some point in the evening you took a selfie. Or posted a pic to your Instagram. Or tweeted about the experience. Or recorded a snippet to share later with friends.

At other shows, committing one of those acts might have meant getting in the way of some other person’s good time. In the case of big tent dance producers Disclosure, their very existence is so inextricably linked to the present, so to have not documented the concert in some way would not only have required a commendable amount of self-restraint, but it also would have contravened the spirit of the soirée.

For a few fleeting moments during the inexplicably short hour-long set, the fresh-faced British duo — aided by a sea of young people who were hanging off every earworm (when they weren’t checking their phones) — carried themselves like the biggest band in the world. They played their hits (minus personal favourite “January”) and consistently gave the loud, sweaty crowd exactly what they wanted.

Not unlike their greener Osheaga performance, but with superior refinement here, the brothers Lawrence have gone to great lengths to not merely be a pair of laptop jockeys. Employing synths, a bass and electronic drums, Disclosure have brought live performance elements to their shows, even though they probably could’ve pulled a pre-packaged Girl Talk set without harming the positive vibes in the room. The next step for them will be to have one or more vocalists join them, instead of relying on overdubs.

Because the brothers themselves sang “F for U,” that song ended up being a surprising highlight, as was the infectious, repetitive “Grab Her” (compared to its place as a middling middle tune from their debut album, Settle). They played a few new tracks as well, tracks that weren’t reliant on vocals but effectively mined their familiar palette of house synth sounds. The crowd sang along wildly to both “When a Fire Starts to Burn” and “White Noise,” but the biggest applause of the night was saved for set closer “Latch” — one of those rare unassailable, critical-mass hits capable of putting a floor of sweaty dancers into a communal trance.

If you still have reservations about a couple of young-uns appropriating underground dance subgenres from a decade or so ago, forget it. Join the party, take a few selfies and enjoy. Disclosure are doing a hell of a job fusing dance and pop, and based on last night’s show, they’re onto something big. ■


Leave a Reply