Ed Robertson with the Barenaked Ladies entertains the crowd at Kelowna's Prospera Place on Sunday.

Concert Review: Barenaked Ladies treat their fans in the Okanagan

Opening act Alan Doyle, of Great Big Sea fame, also threw in a handful of his new catchy tunes.

  • Oct. 27, 2015 7:00 a.m.

Heidi Forgo

Special to The Morning Star

For the first time in about a decade the Barenaked Ladies rocked the Okanagan.

Opening act Alan Doyle and the Beautiful Gypsies set the bar high as they got the crowd to their feet with their rocking celtic sound, including past Great Big Sea hits such as When I’m Up (I Can’t Get Down) and Sea of No Cares.

Not counting on security from past days, Doyle threw in a handful of new catchy tunes from his solo album, So Let’s Go, with the raspy toe tapping sounds that come with the combination of bass and fiddle.

Especially enjoyable was the soul touching ballad Laying Down to Perish and 1,2,3,4, which provided a quick pick-me-up.

Newcomer Kendall Carson was born to play fiddle. She is a show stealer who is worthy of watching solo or with the band.

The pick of this band for an opening act provided the perfect platform for the Barenaked Ladies to step onto. The boys from Scarborough and Toronto stepped forward with an air of confidence only found in bands that have survived the test of time.

Making a low-key but solid entrance against a backdrop of shimmering pink, they offered a glimpse of their new album, Silverball

The Ladies’ lead singer Ed Robertson, who described himself as an “Okanagan Trouser Toboggan,” seemed well at home on this his 45th birthday.

The crisp sound of The Old Apartment is a song most of us can relate to. Globetrot, a poetic love ballad, has all the markings of another big hit for this band. Cello driven percussion made Gonna Walk a crowd singing pleasure.

The Ladies did not disappoint their old-time fans with songs such as Brian Wilson, Falling for the First Time, Too Little Too Late, and Pinch MeIf I Had a Million Dollars had all, including event employees, dancing in the aisles.

The Barenaked Ladies concluded the evening with their own mix of some Sam Smith, Taylor Swift, Uptown Funk, and Hozier top 40 tunes.

Although the band did not fill the arena, Okanagan fans rocked out enthusiastically. The Ladies not only offered solid sound but the artistic presentation of stage set couldn’t be underscored. The sheer beauty of the rich cello, solidly supported against the backdrop of turquoise, ocean coloured percussion gave the band the effect of absolute magic with pink and red lighting.

For all those old-time fans, catching this band on their tour will be well worth your while. For newer fans, give Silverball a listen.

Heidi Forgo is a resident of Coldstream, B.C. She and her daughter, Aniko, a freelancer who writes the Getting to Know series for The Morning Star, are local music fans and supporters.

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