When Indie88’s Josie Dye show announced that they were bringing Glasgow’s synth-pop superstars, Chvrches, back to Toronto since appearing at Wayhome two years ago, the show sold out instantly.  It’s always humbling to see so many bands open their tours in Toronto, especially bands that have a special place here.  During the show, Chvrches said a few kind words about the good people at Indie88 and how they supported them on their radio station.  I couldn’t had been happier that they choose Toronto to promote their new album, “Love is Dead” which is due to be released on May 25th.  

The Danforth Music Hall was packed with anticipation for Chvrches return to the stage.  Back of the stage was lined with strobes with Iain Cook and Martin Doherty on left and right, lastly Lauren Mayberry taking centre stage. Now for the first time, I believe, they have included a drummer to their lineup, adding  more depth and expansiveness to their sound.   Chvrches opened with their first single off “Love is Dead”, “Get out” and the first track they produced off “Love is Dead”.  Chvrches has said they wanted to take some more risks on the new album and make it more pop-centric.  Hearing Miracles, Never Say Die and Get Out live for the first time, they are all un-mistakingly catchy pop tunes which will make their setlist rounds this year. 

They surprised the crowd tonight playing “God’s plan” for the first time with Martin Doherty as lead vocalist.  The track plays well live with an excellent, booming, drum interludes between vocals.  Other notable tracks, the brilliant Tether, Forever, Leave a Trace, and closing with their debut album tracks, The Mother We Share and Clearest Blue.  It is difficult not to like Lauren Mayberry performance as she twirls and sings songs of heartache in such a sunny disposition or briefly interlude between songs, reminiscing about a neighborhood cat who got caught underneath their tour bus the last time they played Toronto, hoping it survived all these years.  Despite the pop sensibilities of the new tracks, Chvrches can still throw a visceral punch with their more edgier synth heavy dance tracks. 

With no announcement yet of a North American tour for “Love is Dead” and only doing a handful of shows to promote the record, it sounded unlikely that the band would be back anytime soon, but before leaving the stage, Mayberry announced to the crowd not to fret because they are returning to Toronto to headline NXNE in a few weeks.  Don’t miss out, see you all at NXNE this year.