The Wanted, Tegan and Sara, A Great Big World

When: Sun., Dec. 8 2013


Throughout their 15-year career, twin sisters Tegan and Sara have transitioned from edgy folk-rock to punchy-yet-atmospheric indie-pop, all the while maintaining a lyrical balance between ache and fulfillment, a yearning to connect with the promise of transformation. With their latest LP, the ’80s New-Wavey Heartthrob, the twins take the pop star plunge, ditching the rocky guitars for smooth-as-Katy Perry dance grooves. Tegan and Sara have always been deft with a well-turned tune, so this shift to sparkly princess pop is not unprecedented. Still, it’s odd that their current tour finds this passionate-yet-pensive act opening for mindless boy band du jour The Wanted. In the past, an intriguing schizoid tension pitted Sara’s artsy nuance against Tegan’s simpler, more direct song-craft. That’s been traded for a perky-yet-samey-sounding synth lacquer that sands off the spikes and shards of T&S’s sound for a rough approximation of Cyndi Lauper or early Madonna. It’s not a bad place to be, and Tegan and Sara’s transcendent message remains. Yet their current dance-floor sheen threatens to surround their sharp songs with an impenetrable candy-coated shell. (Pat Moran)

Price: $33

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