Bowery Ballroom / New York City, NY


One Chord to Another– one of Sloan’s countless underappreciated classic records– just turned twenty, so they’re playing it in its entirety on tour this year. The Canadian power pop quartet (whose gimmick is all four of them write and sing their own songs) is criminally overlooked in the states, but massive back home. They’re one of my top five bands of all time, and I’ve seen them an embarrassing amount of times. They’re always great live, but they really brought it on this cool fall night. The killer One Chord is probably their most unabashedly Beatle-esque record, even going so far as to namedrop Ringo in the single “The Lines You Amend.” Tracks like the soft, piano-led “Junior Panthers” (which I’d never seen the band play before) sit alongside the crunchy punk of “G Turns to D” and psych-stomp of “Anyone Who’s Anyone,” all of which are massive fan favorites.

After the full album set, the band came out for another full set of hits and deep cuts (bassist Chris Murphy announced their intention to play at least one song off of each of their eleven albums), but not before a fan proposed to his girlfriend with the help of the band. The newly engaged couple joined Sloan for a sweet, off-key “Deeper Than Beauty” (another favorite of mine that I’d never had the privilege of seeing live – so thank you to them). Over the many years I’ve been seeing them, Sloan has turned, basically, ageless (except for guitarist Patrick Pentland’s long, grey, perplexing Santa beard this time) and remained consistently awesome. Seek them out if you haven’t yet.

-Layne Montgomery

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