Caribou: Running Wild in the World of Live Electronic Music

Originally hailing from the beautiful small town of Dundas, Ontario, Dan Snaith is better known to most in the music scene as the front-man of the incredible four-piece live electronic act and world touring band Caribou.  He’s also known as his alter DJ ego Daphni who is internationally renowned for his seamless DJ sets, aired live on shows like the infamous BBC Radio 1 Essential Mix with iconic host Pete Tong.  At one time, early on in his music career, he was formerly known as Manitoba but was forced to change his stage name avoiding a lawsuit for sharing a similar stage name with a punk rock musician.  He’s a Canadian electronic producer that stuck to his guns and rose to world class stardom despite all the obstacles he’s encountered.  You can clearly see that patiently waiting, over time, it has all paid off.  A true pioneer of Canada’s electronic music scene who persevered, and was able to stay the course to rise to international stardom, performing well over one-hundred and fifty times a year around the globe.

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I was privileged to attend the Caribou show in Calgary last month at Flames Central. Please note that this show sold out two months in advance so I knew that there was a lot of hype behind this stop over already. My good buddy Chris Murphy a.k.a. Stoked on Photos came along to document the event through his camera lens to give you a tingling sense of how incredible this showcase really was visually as well as musically.  I’ve personally never seen the band Caribou live before and I’ve been following Snaith’s music since the early 2000’s so it was pretty safe to say I was super excited for this show! I’ve danced to the Daphni DJ sets live before but I’ve never seen the band all together and I was eagerly awaiting this day along with fourteen-hundred other devoted fans.  Calgary clearly loves Caribou.

Two power house talent buyers and producers, our friends down at The HiFi Club and Live Nation Canada, partnered to bring Caribou to Calgary.  Thanks guys we sincerely appreciate it.  Never skipping a beat and always pumping out the best live music whether it’s an ‘A’ list band or touring DJ, these guys produced a world class event once again and never disappoint the hometown crowd.

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This show was an early event so Chris and I arrived at Flames Central around 9:30pm to ensure we were there to see the show from start to finish, lock down our credentials and find the best spot we could to see this Caribou.  The lineup to get into the place were massive, but moving along at a comfortable pace and the staff at Flames Central were thorough and friendly.   Egyptrixx a Toronto native that has received critical acclaim by music media facets Pitchfork, Spin and the New York Times, was on opening duties.  He’s the purveyor of the celestial, experimental and meditative sounds.  Not a style I’m accustomed to so it was cool to broaden my horizons, open my ears and listen to something far out and different from the norm to me.  It was odd because Egyptrixx has played Calgary solo before, but on this particular night there were two guys playing on stage.  Something I’ve never seen before.  I tried to find out about more about the duo but had no luck.  Their set was dark, up to and including the lighting, there were no motion lights and three heavy dark green and blue stationary spots.  The tunes were long and flat for me me but I can understand the eccentricity in their sound.  The perfect opening act for this epic band!

Caribou took the stage after a short intermission between artists and opened the show with the title track “Our Love” of his self titled recent album that heard a massive happy roar that came from the nearly silent patiently awaiting fans!  They literally cheered in succession after every initial tune was played.  The crowd was totally engaged for their whole set and the energy in the air was infectious.  All the elements were there from the right lighting to great sound to a solid older crowd who were all bellowing out the music.  I can attest that the internet holds no bearing in comparison to this live show.  We had a great spot stage right next to Snaith who was like 30 feet away.   This was a great choice in venue for this event and I cannot wait for Caribou to come back through the #yyc again…  Thanks to all involved and way to knock it outta the park again!

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WORDS: Sean Hill

PHOTOGRAPHY: Stoked on Photos

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