Matthew Good - Live

Matthew Good & Jay Baruchel – Live

As a part of the Canada’s Walk of Fame Festival, Matthew Good and Jay Baruchel performed at Massey Hall with a show titled “Not So Private Banter.” The premise was that with Matthew Good being such an interesting and outspoken guy, why not have a comedic actor onstage to share his stories with and bounce some laughs back and forth. The stage setup would include a bar (with Good’s guitar tech doubling as a bartender) and Good’s webmaster on a leather couch moderating a live twitter feed projected on a screen above the stage for an interactive element. Good would perform songs then trade barbs with Baruchel in between. It seemed like a great idea if not slightly unconventional.

It was a terrible idea.

Right off the bat, Good and Baruchel stormed onto the stage wearing matching t-shirts with their likenesses on them and warned the audience that their show would contain profanity. What they should’ve warned them was that the comedy wouldn’t ever extend beyond dick and fart jokes. Baruchel never had much to say aside from pointing out that Good’s songs were “kind of downers”. He even had the audacity to heckle him during a song.

It all amounted to a photo-bombing. While Good was playing a selection of acoustic versions of deep cuts from the entire span of his career, an act of fan-service that was deeply appreciated, Baruchel was using the rear screen to play video games (NHL ’94). It was novel for about a minute or so, but the joke was beaten to death as he returned to his game later in the set and continued to play. In an attempt to distract Good from his performing (for “comedic” effect) Baruchel displayed a picture of a naked muscular man holding a pair of lion cubs on the screen and exclaimed “look at those abs! Don’t you just want to jerk off all over them!” Later in the performance, while Good and Baruchel rated the quality of strippers across Canada, Baruchel had to restrain himself from making the exact same joke while evaluating the washboard abs of Canada’s male strippers.

Other ill-fated bits included an interactive cartography session (featuring Alexisonfire’s Wade MacNeil making a cameo as an easel.) People in the audience would yell out locations for Good to draw onto a map, with names like “Dick Mountain” or “Tits Bay.” The segment dragged as Baruchel kept track of just how many minutes of time were wasted. Jeremy Taggart was brought on stage for absolutely no reason to play an extended drum solo. When Good realized his show was beginning to unravel he asked the audience “how much did you pay for these tickets anyway?”

While I wouldn’t call it an outright rip-off. Good’s musical performance was stellar despite the unwelcome distractions in between. But for a show better suited to the Comedy Bar. the people who shelled out as much as $150 a seat deserved better.

Setlist

  1. Metal Airplanes
  2. Born Losers
  3. Sort of a Protest Song
  4. Blue Skies Over Badlands
  5. Load Me Up
  6. Tripoli
  7. Omissions of the Omen
  8. Generation X-Wing
  9. Strange Days
  10. Symbolistic White Walls
  11. Alert Status Red
  12. Apparitions
  13. Guns of Carolina (encore)