Facebook R&B crooner Mario has been relatively quiet on the music front for…
- Posted on Jun 18th 2010 12:15PM by Drew Berner
Pick up a copy of their record and they come across as unassuming, though they make catchy, '60s-influenced pop-rock with the best of them. But as they took the stage at Toronto's Rivoli on Thursday night as part of NXNE, they nearly dared the crowd to look away.
All eyes were on the stage as the band tore through crowd favourites like 'How Does it Feel?,' 'Marching Through Your Head' and finale 'You Gotta Teller.' Zeus, who began as the backing band for Broken Social Scene affiliate Jason Collett, have a reputation for being tight, but they loosened up enough to give the set a jammy feel. Members traded instruments, vocal lines and harmonies with ease, while the grins and knowing looks they exchanged showed they loved every minute of it. And their joy was contagious -- for a moment Toronto's usually-reserved music fans could have been mistaken for a gang of teenagers rocking out to 45s in their parents' basement.
A set comprising only the band's own songs would have undoubtedly been satisfying, but it seems no set these days is complete without an unexpected, truly inspired cover song. Zeus aren't exactly prog-rockerslike Genesis, but as they stomped their way through Phil Collins and co's 1983 hit 'That's All,' it seemed nothing could have made more sense. It took a minute for those who knew the song to catch on, but every head in the room was bobbing before long.
The band could have easily played the show on autopilot, having heard their debut full-length, 'Say Us,' was nominated for the Polaris Prize earlier in the day, but instead they came out inspired to prove they deserved it.