At most concerts, you can tell when a band's set is about to end: Songs grow longer and more dynamic, tempos slow as if seizing on the last chance to stretch the evening out. But if you'd shown up a few minutes late to M83's show at the Electric Factory on Wednesday, you might have cast a worried glance at the time on your ticket. Nearly every song in their hour-plus set sounded like a set-closer, reflecting leader Anthony Gonzales' penchant for playing every song as if it might be his last.
Beginning with the appropriately named "Intro," from last year's expansive Hurry Up, We're Dreaming, Gonzales and his three-piece band strived for a state of constant ecstasy, pushing the needle into the red and leaving it there. Lyrics took a back seat to emotion in its less articulate forms: Some songs were pure instrumentals, while others consisted mainly of wordless utterances, especially when Gonzales ceded the lead vocals to keyboardist Morgan Kibby, who with outstretched arms and flame-red dress evoked the monotheistic priestess from Game of Thrones. The sold-out crowd sang along, even when there were no words to sing, mimicking the electronic riff that anchors the irresistible "Midnight City" - actually a highly processed vocal, although it sounds more like a vintage synthesizer.