Homeshake's Red Hot Night for POP Montreal

On Saturday night, a sold-out Rialto was hot and ready for one of Montreal’s finest indie singers of his generation. After two opening acts, first Cherry Monday, followed by Guy’s#, the young faces in the crowd started chanting and hollering at Homeshake as he was preparing his equipment on the stage.


Homeshake is the stage name of Peter Sagar, a superbly mellow fellow hailing from Edmonton, but based in Montreal’s Mile End. Homeshake was the headliner of POP Montreal’s main Saturday night show. Sagar is also known for being part of Mac DeMarco’s band up until 2014, the same year he released his first album.


What it magic about Homeshake’s music is that it doesn’t need any kind of artifice, or over-the-top decoration and such that is ubiquitous on the indie scene. Its strength lies in its stripped-down intimacy, something that is sometimes hard to recreate performing in a concert hall.


The first few guitar notes from Hello Welcome, the intro to Homeshake’s latest album Fresh Air, were enough to understand the depth of what we were getting into. A true feeling of intimacy was instantaneous. People looking at each other, happy of having made the choice of coming out and probably seeing Homeshake for the first or second time.


The show took on higher dimension when Every Single Thing came up, one of his biggest singles to date. The live interpretation did not let down. The falsetto hook was followed by an enthusiastic public on the fast-tempo cut.The tremolo guitar in Getting Down Pt II set a very drowsy Mac DeMarco vibe, just as Chowder did right after.


Another high moment was reached when the succulent Call Me Up made it to our ears. Cue the falsetto again, cue the sexyness again. The synth line, imitated by Sagar’s voice later in the song, made for one of the moments where the public hummed happily with closed eyes. Give It To Me, arguably Homeshake’s most well known song, was played differently than on the album, but to great effect. A slowed-down version of the already slow song was pure, open and again - sexy as hell.


At the outset, Sagar promised a set of fifteen songs. That is exactly what happened - no more, no less. No bonus for a crowd that begged for the four-man band to come back on stage. While many thought the show ended too early at around 50 minutes, there was no question that the quality of a Homeshake live set will make the fans come back for more.


Short, sweet, and sexy.