For Esmé Artscape Gibraltar Point, Toronto ON, August 19
Published Aug 20, 2016Toronto electro-pop three-piece For Esmé kept their supper-time set short and sweet on Friday night (August 19), packing just enough punch into their Camp Wavelength performance.
Consisting of lead singer Martha Meredith, guitarist Nathan Crook and bassist Dave Thiel, the trio brought a youthful energy to the stage. Dancing and swaying along to the bright bass lines and cool synths, the musicians' positive dispositions radiated from the stage as they performed tracks off last year's debut LP, Sugar. Standouts included the sparkly "You" and the grungier, Salinger-inspired "Franny and Zooey," during which Meredith admitted with unbridled confidence: "I'm afraid of competition / 'cuz I'm afraid that I might win."
Occasionally, the balance between Meredith's powerhouse vocals and the heavy instrumentation proved difficult to maintain, with her voice getting slightly drowned out during "Just Yet." Slight power struggle aside, though, the set was kept diverse thanks to inclusions like a down-tempo, semi-acoustic ballad and the grand finale of a Yeah Yeah Yeahs' "Gold Lion" cover featuring fellow festival performer Wolf Saga.
Bringing the personality from their studio recordings to life on stage, and adding in a few unexpected tricks, For Esmé were a delight to watch.