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Morthouse and Hoan at POP Montreal

Morthouse and Hoan at POP Montreal

Morthouse and Hoan at POP Montreal 9

I think I need to retract my statement about Holy Fuck being the best performance of Pop Montreal this year.

Morthouse and Hoan at POP Montreal 10Morthouse definitely tied with Holy Fuck, an absolute surprise. If I closed my eyes, I completely forgot I was standing in front of a two-piece: L’escogriffe was bombasted with the visceral, blistering polyrhythms of Thomas L’Allier and Phil L’Allier as they jammed their way through a set on fire. A drum-synth setup executed with unbelievable style, and a set of vocals that was at once hard as nails and sultry-smooth, Morthouse is exactly what I want from a live show.

Morthouse calls to mind the brilliance of old rockers, without contrived attempts to do so. They breathe new life into tough rock n’ roll, by virtue of their technological skill, jazzy time signatures, and original flair for sound. Toying with space and feedback, it was like they were directing a lightning storm with their bare hands.

Make them a part of your life.

And then I got a second go at Pop Montreal’s unwritten secret performers, Hoan, who have just unleashed their new EP, Modern Phase.

It was great to see them again in the darkness of Club Lambi, a place where the ceiling is on the cusp of falling on your head, where the walls are raw with plaster and a Nick Carter doppelganger is running around trying to do the sound. But Hoan makes sense with the lights low and vivd, they make sense in the night. And the machinated swirlings of synthetic-affected instrumentation is slowly becoming addictive. I hope you get hooked, too.

Morthouse and Hoan at POP Montreal 11

Happy Popping. See you around the streets next year.

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