Theatrics are not a trademark of Canadian rock duo Japandroids’ live show. It’s just two men, one with an electric guitar and one behind a drum kit, playing urgent rock’n'roll. But during Tuesday night’s Doug Fir Lounge performance frontman Brian King paused the set midway through to retrieve a prop offstage.
King came out in a dark-colored vest, if only briefly, to show vest devotee Rollie Pemberton, of opening act Cadence Weapon, he too could rock the clothing article. His joke finished, King invited the crowd to blog about it later and then removed the vest and commenced to rocking their faces off.
The band alternated between cuts from debut Post-Nothing and recently released Celebration Rock, in theory giving fans who did not like one or the other a chance to grab a beer or take a piss. Inadvertently, this punch/counterpunch approach showcased how much the band has grown in capturing its balls to the wall aesthetic and how well its older tracks have aged over the past three years.
I came away from Doug Fir thinking the only way I would witness a more life-affirming show in 2012 was if I witnessed Japandroids again. As with the first time I saw Japandroids in Portland, I also left Tuesday’s show with a sore neck.