Music » Livewire

Barenaked Ladies

With Vertical Horizon, Sarah Harmer, and Action Figure Party, Monday, July 16, at Blossom.

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Because their latest album, Maroon, has been out for about a year now, Barenaked Ladies' summer tour is really just an outdoor extension of the shows they played earlier in support of the record. But that really doesn't matter to fervent followers of the Canadian band, which could probably play 20 local shows a year and still draw a full house. Personally, we don't get it. The Ladies' albums (six of them, including a live disc) are filled with goofy riffs and jokey songs about Yoko Ono and Brian Wilson (easy targets, even when they were relevant). Maybe the Ladies reacted to all the grunge that was around them during their formative years. Maybe their music is a light alternative to all the nu-metal madness. Whatever it is, the Barenaked Ladies are definitely a cult band that has long since outgrown its cult status. Even when they attempt half-serious songs, like the tolerable "One Week" from a few years back, the guys can't resist tossing in pop culture references and self-serving lyrics guaranteed a chuckle among the easily amused. Still, the Ladies know how to put on a show and work the audience. That much can't be said of the three opening acts -- Vertical Horizon, Sarah Harmer, and Action Figure Party. Only Vertical Horizon (famous for the hit "Everything You Want") will be familiar to radio listeners, and its time in the pop spotlight is just about up.

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