Saturday, January 19, 2008

Dan Deacon at Great American Music Hall

(Photo taken by me)
Thursday night, Dan Deacon played at The Great American Music Hall with opening bands Kit and HEALTH. Directly before his solo set, the video project called "Ultimate Reality" that he collaborated on with Jimmy Joe Roche was shown, along with the accompanying soundtrack written for two drums.

Kit and HEALTH got the beat pumping to set the mood for the show, bringing upbeat quick tempos and ear splicing electronic and industrial noises. Successfully driving the crowd into a frenzy, ready for Dan Deacon, the two bands did what they had come for very efficiently. While I preferred HEALTH over Kit, I see a future for both, and strongly suggest you check out their music the next time you host a house party or huge DJ gathering.

The Ultimate Reality film was an experience you have to see up close to grasp and feel. While two drummers play fast insane rhythms (composed by Dan Deacon), a huge screen behind them projects psychedelic images of Arnold Schwarzenegger movies put together by Jimmy Joe Roche. To quote a more apt explanation on Wikipedia: "The footage was appropriated by Jimmy from Schwarzenegger classics such as Terminator 2 and Total Recall to accompany the composition for Ultimate Reality. Jimmy has transformed the violent struggles of these films into a mesmerizing sequence of fantastic images where popular science fiction icons seep in and out of mirrored layers of kaleidoscopic color."

The result of Jimmy's work is incredibly amazing. I couldn't take my eyes away and the beats were extremely easy to move to. Many people launched into dance, which pleased me immensely.

And finally, the Dan Deacon set. What way to describe it? Dan Deacon did his usual routine of playing just down off the stage while the crowd gathered around him and on the stage. I was either just next to or behind Dan for the whole show and the experience was incredible. Dan had us holding a dance off with a cat walk, all kneeling down on the floor while raising our hands, and even creating a huge bridge with our hands for the entire audience to snake through (in which he used me as a test subject). Strobe lights tripped you out, different colored lights flashed, and the green skull at the front of the audience shown us on into the dancing.

It was not just a concert. It was a lifestyle for an hour and a half.

Photo once again by me.

Overall the experience was incredible, sweaty, tiring, and literally breath taking.
Dan Deacon said he will be back in the spring.
New record anyone? Don't miss this next one.

Photos from the event on Flickr: Click here
More info on Dan Deacon:

For your listening pleasure:
Dan Deacon - Snake Mistakes

Tuesday, January 15, 2008

Here Here

I was listening to Live 105’s supposedly indie/local/sort-of-unknown new music show Soundcheck last month and was incredibly happy to discover the song “Poor Sailor” by Here Here flood through the speakers. Finally, some different-sounding music on that radio show. And I haven’t been able to stop visiting Here Here’s myspace page to listen repeatedly ever since. They sound like the Arcade Fire, melding piano and violin, as well as instruments like the banjo and an accordian. There's something about the violin that makes music sound epic, especially when accompanied by flowing vocals. The song subjects are interesting too. One seems to be about Canada, another entitled "All Hail Ye Fellow Sleepwalkers" contains one of the most fitting lyrics for someone with as many final papers to write as I have: a long, drawn out proclamation that "sleep seems so far away."

I’m having difficulty finding anything at all about them except for what’s on their myspace. They have 699 plays on, and I think I heard that they played their first show ever last summer. They’re from San Francisco and recently released “Boy With an Orange EP”, available at Amoeba or through Itunes or Emusic.

You can listen to songs here: