CJLO Celebrates its 20th Anniversary with Legal Vertigo and The Operators in a Sonically-Charged Celebration (Photo Gallery)

It was twenty years ago around this time when CJLO got its start. The year was 1999 - Jeopardy was at its peak and The Sixth Sense (I see dead people!) was just released. Montreal even had a baseball team and the Canadiens failed to make the playoffs, which was the closest the world came to ending despite all of the Y2K hysteria. Cher had a number one hit with  “Believe” and Britney Spears was doing it “One More Time.”

To mark this momentous occasion of CJLO’s 20 years, we teamed up with Greenland Entertainment and co-presented an evening of music at Theatre Fairmount. Electronic pop groups Legal Vertigo and The Operators, both from Montreal, played to a packed room in momentous fashion. Here’s what happened that night.

The audience was in a celebratory mood from the very first act. Legal Vertigo is led by lead singer Andrew Woods and backup vocals/guitarists Basia Bulat and Pallice. The band played songs from their up-coming album Tragic Future Film Star, which is due out in November. One of the more memorable tunes was "Napster Vertigo", which was the former name of the band according to lead singer Woods, but was changed in fear of litigation and more importantly, an enormous lawyer bill. Legal Vertigo played a song titled "Now is Better Than Before" and after their 40-minute set one would have to agree with the track’s title. Memorably, Woods' dance moves and personable persona primed the audience for The Operators, CJLO anniversary-bash headliners.

The Operators is the latest project by Wolf Parade vocalist/guitarist Dan Boeckner. The band also features Devojka on synths/vocals and drummer Sam Brown and are actually currently on tour with Legal Vertigo promoting their latest material. The electronic power trio basked in the glow of an omnipresent backdrop projection lending unnerving visuals to the already-unnerving harmonics.

Finishing their east coast tour promoting new albums, the audience had the pleasure of welcoming the two bands back to Montreal. By the end of the night after two energized sets both Legal Vertigo and The Operators proved there that there’s always something special about hometown concerts.

We can only imagine what the 40th birthday party will be like! Will people arrive via flying electric cars? Will the bands be playing on a levitating stage? Maybe the party will be simulcasted to a hotel on mars. Whatever the case, our future selves will be hard-pressed to top CJLO’s 20th birthday bash.

Here are a few photos from the event:

1. CJLO staff Stephen and Jessica manning the merch booth. CJLO is in the house!

2. Members of Legal Vertigo lending some powerful backup featuring Basia Bulat on guitar.

3. Andrew Woods of Legal Vertigo can dance, sing, and play keyboards.

4. Legal Vertigo under the bright lights.

5. Devojka of The Operators showing her skills with the soundboard.

6. Dan Boeckner of The Operators delivered energetic vocals from the first to last note of the performance.

7. The Operators: electronic pop group heading for the stars.

8. The Operators with their new album cover art in the background.

9. CJLO's publicity poster designed by art director Angelica Calcagnile.

10. A slice of home at the merch booth.

Here's to another 20 at CJLO!