Crystal Castles Bring Down the House at One Eyed Jacks

11:10 September 12, 2016
By: Steve Hatley

"The fate of the world is safe in Crystal Castles." – She-Ra. 

For some reason and a logical conclusion, I always though the band name came from the old Atari game.  Crystal Castles are an experimental electronic band formed in 2003 in Toronto, Ontario by songwriter/producer Ethan Kath.  In 2006, Alice Glass joined the band and helped put out CC I-III.  Alice left the band in 2014 and was replaced by Edith Frances, who had never performed live on stage. It was a tall order to step into the shoes of such a big personality. 

Ethan has always had vision of dark terror and aggression in his music and is amplified on stage by the live drums of Christopher Chartrand. Amnesty (I) is the band latest effort, which was released almost a month ago, is channeling a new beginning. The evolution of sound wasn’t lost, later taken to another level.  Frances in some stylistic ways is a carbon copy of Glass and during the set at One Eyed Jacks Friday night, one would wonder if she was channeling her, as the vocal stylings were almost dead on as well as the portions of the performance itself.

This past Friday night was a huge explosion of musical talents across the city.  Shows at the Joy and Civic were sold out as well as almost sold out Kraftwerk show at the Orpheum.  This One Eyed Jacks show was also SOLD OUT.  The crowd was for the most part on their game and in turn, the band put on an amazing show that sounded flawless and the light show was beyond mesmerizing. The setlist was, of course, stacked with material from the new album and tour sake.  The traces interwove easily with the material from I-III.  The set ended with the band's cover of Platinum Blonde’s “Not in Love.”  In some ways, the song has taken on a whole new meaning.  The band came back to play two more songs, the enchanting, and beautiful lead track to Amnesty (I), “Femen,” which in many ways gives off the feel of the XX’s “Intro” live.  The tracks are far different from each other but exist as perfect starting points from the perspective albums. The band ended with and energetic and frenzy filled performance of “Wrath of God“ which served as the perfect explanation point for the evening. 

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