The Replacements have been beloved by everyone from Nirvana to the Decemberists, from Titus Andronicus to the Goo Goo Dolls, but they’ve never been good at preaching to the unconverted. So when, midway through their first show in 22 years, at the Toronto edition of Riot Fest, frontman Paul Westerberg dedicated I Will Dare “to anyone who was dragged” to the gig, something was bound to go wrong. By the second verse, Westerberg forgot the words and started ad-libbing (“I smell a skunk!”), derailing the winsome pop number. True fans smiled knowingly: it wouldn’t be a real Replacements show without self-sabotage.
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