IVY + Hexes & Ohs + Astaire @ Cabaret

By Lina Harper - Ivy Gives Good Rashes - 06/13/2005

Since their debut album in 1995, Ivy has known some small successes in their lives as soft indie rock darlings. The three-piece band played to an intimate crowd on Monday June 13th at Cabaret (2111 Saint-Laurent). The low turnout was perhaps due to the cost of the tickets ($15) or the sweltering heat of the temporary sauna we called Montréal. If only people knew that the joint is nicely air-conditioned, intimate and the sound quality is pretty on par with the bigger venues in the city.

After getting to the show a bit late, missing Hexes and Ohs (who I've gone to see before and are Montreal's next big musical IT couple, in my opinion) and part of Astaire, I sat comfortably in the cool basement-like cave of the Cabaret with my pint of Boreal ($5.75 + tip). Ivy opened with a spectacular light show and some sultry vocals and bass. The band's chemistry was soon on display. The entire experience seemed to synthesize and anesthetize the crowd, which was probably around my age -- late twenties to early thirties. Singer Dominique Duran and bassist Adam Schlesinger maintained a humorous casual rapport with the crowd, joking about the appropriateness of a disco ball effect for their next tune. When it came time for their older stuff, breathy Dominique sang "The Edge Of The Ocean", clearly a crowd favorite. She also talked to the audience in perfect French, saying she was a Parisienne in America. She currently writes songs about and in her adopted city of New York, where the band recorded their latest album In The Clear, the fourth one released on EMI July 11th. Lyrical rhymes focused on the coldest of the American city ("trying to get out, people are so angry"). Ivy is also known for having their "Edge Of The Ocean" song in the Julie Delpy and Ethan Hawke film, Before Sunset. Also, listen for "I'll Be Near You" in Bee Season with Juliette Binoche and Richard Gere in theaters this fall.

Also, be sure not to miss the band's beautiful graphic-interfaced website for updated information about their current tour.

[LINA HARPER is a freelancer who gets poison ivy when sojourning through the Laurentians woods sometimes, but thinks it's all a big joke]