There are a couple of things you should know before you go see Chaperone! live:
- Bass player Miles Doornbos bakes cookies for the audience before every show.
- You’re gonna have a good time whether you want to or not, so just go with it. Also, they’re some of the nicest people you could hope to meet.
I was happy, as I always am in these cases, that I was not let down with Chaperone! after my review of their EP. I think they’re a really good band, and after speaking with them for a few minutes, I could tell they’re a pretty close group. And it absolutely shows through in their performance. I would say there is a bit of one-upmanship going on, but with Miles, I don’t know that anyone else in the band has the energy to outdo him.
The whole band gets on famously, and the energy is relentless. Even when they play a slower song like “Waltzing Topside,” they still move around the stage and let the music push and pull them every which way.
And when they play a real hair-raiser like “Thomas!” things get crazy. As much as everyone on stage seem to be enjoying things, the audience is even MORE into it. Jumping up and down, dancing, hand-clapping along with the performers. This is live performance 101, kids. If you can get the crowd to play along with you, people are gonna leave with a smile on their faces.
I have no knowledge of how long the set was that they played. I know that they played all the songs off of their EP, Cripple King, as well as some newer stuff, but I was so caught up in it that time lost all meaning. You could almost measure the length of time on stage by the liters of sweat seeping off of Miles, but I don’t want that job, and I doubt anyone else does. I can say that for a lot of bands, I kind of tune out if I don’t know the song they’re playing, but that wasn’t the case on this night. If anything I was listening more intently, trying to decipher new words and progressions unfamiliar to my ears.
The highlight of the new stuff, for me anyway, was a song by Miles called “Raised By Wolves.” Previously the energy coming from the band was at a level I didn’t think could be eclipsed, but leave it to this guy to crank it up to 11. The song doesn’t seem to fit with much of the other stuff Chaperone! had done, it was much more punk than anything on the EP, for sure. It was so far set apart from the rest of the show, in fact, that I think it will be what I remember most about this performance.
All the songs from the EP sounded great. Standing in front of the speakers, Shayla’s vocals seemed a bit drowned out, but when I went back and listened to my recordings, I was elated that somehow the mic picked up ALL of the different voices featured. Which is good, because the harmonies that Chaperone! put out are very sweet, and add that extra layer that takes a song from good to great.
I should mention that the opening acts Dylan Kloska, Elephant Gun, and Dastardly were all good as well. For the first two bands I wasn’t paying that much attention because I was there with my friend Dominic, who I don’t see nearly enough, and we were talking about religion and Christine O’Donnell. What I heard sounded good, though. And the end of the Dastardly set was pretty cool.
Chaperone! is playing again next month at Metro, and I very highly recommend taking an evening to enjoy their music. Dastardly is also on that bill, so it’s almost like going to see this concert again, or for the first time if you missed out.
- Check out my review of Chaperone!’s EP, Cripple King.
- They’re opening for Aktar Aktar @ Metro on November 12. Tickets are $10.
Chaperone! performing Thomas!
Chaperone! performing “Waltzing Topside”