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In concert: Tegan and Sara

Tegan SaraTegan and Sara proved much more than a sweet folk duo Wednesday at Warner Theatre. (All photos by Kyle Gustafson)

By Chris Klimek

One thing about Canadians: They get that it's better to promise modestly and deliver in spades, rather than the other way 'round.

"Overall, I think you will be entertained," Tegan - half of the identical twin folk-duo-turned-tandem-pop-punkstresses Tegan and Sara - undersold before a hormonally supercharged Warner Theatre Wednesday night, three songs into a date with an audience that surprised even those sensitive Quin sisters with the pitch and intensity of its lung-power.

(Still precious at times, plus more pictures after the jump.)

Tegan Sara

The hysteria must have taken them back a little. The duo hadn't yet outrun their teens before they were playing Lilith Fair and opening for The Pretenders - a useful reference point into the kind of tuneful-but-tough rock band into which they've evolved. A half-dozen albums in and just shy of 30, Tegan and Sara are no longer primarily a sweetly harmonizing emo act beloved by gay women. Their newest album, "Sainthood," is an angular New Wave confection that could've dropped at any time in the last 30 years.

They burned through half of it at the top of the show, the agitated lines of up to three guitarists (including their three-piece band) conspiring to spring these abrasive tunes from their studio glaze. After that came the more precious fare that, judging by those shrieks of approbation, were what had sold the tickets. Seminal stuff like "My Number" and "Living Room" showcased those elfin harmonies - and cloying banter - that gave this outfit an identity early on.

The lengthy encore found them refitting "Feel It in My Bones," originally an electronica collaboration with the Dutch DJ Tiesto, as an acoustic ballad. At the risk of understatement, overall, we were entertained.

Tegan Sara

Tegan Sara

By David Malitz  |  February 18, 2010; 1:10 PM ET
Categories:  In concert  | Tags: Tegan and Sara  
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