Gypsophilia’s Live Show Brings Lots of Life To Their Studio Recordings

By Mario Breau

Gypsophilia brought their mix of klezmer, funk and classical music to Fredericton March 21, along with stage antics and animated crowd interaction.

Their performance convinced me to show my support for a great band by purchasing their latest full-length album Constellation. Many of the tracks featured on this CD were played that night, and I can’t help but compare the two listening experiences: live show versus recording.

On the album, their fun and playful character comes through in their gypsy jazz style compositions, such as ‘Trick Wick’ and the well-loved ‘Montréal’, and the high level of musicianship all around is clearly heard with a tasteful balance.

It’s a pleasant collection of pieces for a party, for a small friendly gathering, or for whenever you feel like dancing while washing the dishes.

Most of us have experienced the drastic drop-in performance quality between album and concert that many bands are prone to, but Gypsophilia doesn’t disappoint this way. That same sound on their recordings is there on stage as well. They lose nothing in translation because there is nothing to translate; the band speaks the same language in the studio as they do on stage.

In fact, they sound even better live, with an increased level of energy added to the already lively compositions. Some of the most wonderful textures and sounds they achieve, like harmonizing a pair of guitar lines or doubling a violin part with trumpet, can’t be fully appreciated when listening to a digital recording.

Not only do they sound better, but the experience is improved and has so much more depth. While understanding that performance for an audience is an art in itself, Gypsophilia, through their frontman Ross Burns, carefully break down the tired performer-audience structure with authentic enthusiasm and a desire for everyone to have a great time.

Never have I seen someone so genuinely concerned with inspiring the crowd to move and dance, nor have I seen someone gain such apparent satisfaction from succeeding.

And the reaction to all this was, as you may have guessed, very positive. By walking into the crowd to dance among us, or by taking the audience through a vocal warm-up before inciting everyone to sing along to an arrangement of ‘Vino Griego,’ Ross Burns and Gypsophilia instill a sense of community where the audience is comfortable.

So comfortable, they were left demanding encores of their favourite pieces, singing along to a fragment of the Queen classic ‘We Are The Champions’ in the song ‘Super Bowl Party,’ or emphatically chanting “Sports!” for no apparent reason. This is what a live show should be.

To keep up to date with Gypsophilia, or to purchase Constellation or their latest EP Horska, click HERE.

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