Concert Review: Suuns & Jerusalem In My Heart
Wednesday, June 24th @ Lucky Bar
Words By Braiden Gunn (Photos By Mike Parolini)
I arrived before the music had started and a decent sized crowd of enthusiastic faces had already made their way down to Lucky Bar to see the pair of Montreal acts. Technical Kidman kicked things off with a mesmerizing set of electronic alt rock. The music I’d heard from Suuns & Jerusalem In My Heart prior to the show felt very droning and distant. Technical Kidman used this far-off, reverb-heavy sound as well, just in a slightly more aggressive manner. I was taken aback by the amount of energy which erupted from the trio on stage and they were met with cheers from a pleasantly surprised crowd afterwards. The amount of distortion on the lead singer’s vocals prevented many of the words from being decipherable but this night was not about lyrics, it was all about the vibes. As far as opening acts go I think Technical Kidman hit some of the important points right on the head: wake the crowd up and set the mood.
There was a short break for the crowd to recuperate and to allow the main act to set up. One of the more interesting additions to the stage was a stringed instrument, which resembled a lute or an oud but sounded closer to a sitar. Suuns & Jerusalem In My Heart came together to create a self-titled LP and as such their set comprised of music primarily, if not entirely, from that project. The music that comes out of these two names coming together is extremely representative of the origins of each of the individual projects. Suuns are a four man indie-rock art-punk group and Jerusalem In My Heart is the project of Radwan Ghazi Moumneh a Canadian-Lebanese avant-garde modernist.
The music did seem to hold back on the rock and punk in favour of a more serene, spiritual experience. The members utilized electronics and live instruments, coupled with haunting Arabic vocals to fill the room with a captivating energy. The closest their music came to a climax is during the intense clattering snares of the track “Gazelles In Flight” but even then the energy doesn’t quite peak and then fades off into nothing. I felt like the general reaction from the audience was a positive one. Not everyone was familiar with the acts but they were open-minded about the music and the bands seized the opportunity to give a memorable performance.