The Cult @ Metropolis, Montreal – July 10th, 2016

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I was at a friend’s BBQ cutting through perfectly cooked steaks when I got word that Montreal Rocks was invited to see The Cult. Nothing like a last minute notice to wake you up! Being a DJ for 25 years, I rarely dance. My place for many years was behind the turn tables making everyone else groove. There are a few songs that to this day will get me on the dancefloor and two of those are from The Cult. My friend understood the significance of tonight, so off we went to the Metropolis to catch the show, and possibly dance.

Montreal’s The Damn Truth opened up the show. I told Lee-La and the boys after the show that unfortunately, I missed their set, but it’s OK… I will see them at Osheaga. All was forgiven.


I was hoping to see cowboy hats with feathers sticking out of them, or the Daniel Boon hat off Electric, but the only costumes we would see tonight were black jeans and t-shirts. What the band lacked in visuals, they surely made up in sound.

I’ve only ever seen Ian Astbury live when he embodied Jim Morrison for The Doors of The 21st Century on August 7th, 2004. That iconic voice was being heard tonight, but with songs from their new album Hidden City as well as a selection of songs going all the way back to Dreamtime (1984).


They started us off with Wildflower which made our hearts beat faster as the song describes before going into the title track of the new album (10th) with “Dark Energy.” Fans of earlier material were not disappointed when the recognizable drums and guitar intro started for “Rain.” The crowd sang along with Ian as Billy Duffy gave us those riffs we have come to know and love.


I loved the crowd, who respected their neighbors, not crushing people to get to the front, but leaving a comfortable buffer around everyone to experience the show with plenty of space to sway and groove.

For “Birds of Paradise”, Ian took off his dark glasses and made a connection with the audience introducing more from the new album.

A few of the highlights, apart from “Rain” & “She Sells Sanctuary” which had us all jumping and signing along was the song that is a nightmare for anyone with a lisp: “Sweet Soul Sister” about the European youth becoming Americanized.

It would have been great to hear “Edie (Ciao Baby)” but it wasn’t meant to be.

Ian who seems to have a love/hate relationship with his tambourines ended up throwing quite a few into the crowd.


Their set ended with the legendary “She Sells Sanctuary” which connected the strongest with the crowd and brought us all back to 1985…well…those old enough to remember their album Love.

The Cult ended the night with an encore of two songs, one new and one old. “G.O.A.T.” which is an acronym for “Greatest of All Time” and “Love Removal Machine” which was heavily influenced by the fact that Rick Rubin couldn’t stop listening to Back in Black in the studio when they recorded this song.

Excerpts from the show:

Finally, being given Ian’s set list, I left the Metropolis having finally seen The Cult. I would have liked to see a little more effort with the lights, using them in a way to give us a little more intimacy with the band. I miss the groovy costumes from the 80s and 90s. I guess after all these years…the band doesn’t need props to make the show a success. I finally got to hear Ian, Duffy and the rest of the band perform the songs that made me dance yet again.

Set List

Wild Flower
Dark Energy
Horse Nation
Lil’ Devil
Birds of Paradise
Deeply Ordered Chaos
Sweet Soul Sister
Fire Woman
The Phoenix
She Sells Sanctuary

Love Removal Machine

Randal Wark is a Professional Speaker and Business coach with a passion for live music.  You can follow him on InstagramTwitter and YouTube.

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