Concert Review :: Beaches

by Myles Tiessen

“Even if it’s the Lord’s Day, who gives a fuck?” screamed The Beaches lead vocalist Jordan Miller to a sold-out crowd at the Burton Cummings Theatre. 

A unanimous response from the Gen Z crowd roared back at her; they certainly did not. 

TikTok’s latest rock stars took The Burton Cummings Theatre by storm on a particularly rainy Sunday at the start of November. With their exaggerated stage presence, striking lighting running around, and stepping on every inch of that stage; the four-piece played with the intensity of an arena rather than the vestige building they occupied. 

And with equal kinetic energy, the attentive and chaotic audience ate it up. Seemingly, a mix of new and old fans piled on top of each other, fighting for space as close to the stage as possible. It’s honestly a surprise some didn’t try to pose as media just to get in the photography pit. 

Under the purple and blue lights, The Beaches effortlessly flaunted their talents for bringing old-school rock, new-wave, and power-pop into an accessible music language. Their vigorous performance of “Cigarette” made you feel like you were in the crowd for Stop Making Sense, while the intoxicating dissonance of “Back Of My Heart” played to those (like me) who have a disturbing need never to leave a show with their hearing. 

What’s most stunning was that although The Beaches are masters of musical inclusivity, they were uncompromising in their racket. They played loud, fast, and hard. In another venue–with low ceilings and a floor-level stage–some of these songs would have come across as straight-up punk. “Everything is Boring,” “Me and Me,” hell, even “Blame Brett” all resonated with the sonority of grunge melodies. 

But, not to be tagged as the “Gen Z Foo-Fighters,” the quartet spent a good chunk of the performance leaning into the sensuality of their songs. “While I’m not ready for love, I am ready for lots and lots of sex,” announced Miller before launching into a duet of “My Body ft. Your Lips” with opening band Beach Weather. As the two lead singers embraced, crowd members started throwing bras toward the performers. The Beaches bassist, Leandra Earl, started sporting one as a hat while other band members hooked them to their microphone stands. 

The fandom around The Beaches is honestly quite something to witness. After the show, a particular group of fans confessed to “paying sixty bucks just to hear them play ‘Blame Brett,’” while others fawned over and compared notes on the last time they saw the band in Winnipeg. 

The pandemonium of admirers aside, The Beaches put on an honest-to-god rock show: unpretentious and loud, but when it comes down to it, most importantly, it was fun. 

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