Monday, February 06, 2006

The Juan MacLean and Kudu at the Bowery Ballroom

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Kudu saving the night of music at the Bowery (All Photos taken by MC)

MC and I made our weekly trek to a concert, as I attempt to be in-the-know and she looks for places so loud that she can't hear me talk. It was my first chance to see a show at the Bowery Ballroom, and I was impressed. It's not too big, but big enough to draw bigger name bands and have a really electric feeling. Unfortunately, this show never really panned out, a disappointing night musically.

The opener, Holy Fuck (as in, Holy Fuck these guys are terrible!) was just awful to these ears, a mixture of a jam band and noisy, avant artistes. It was all done with self-consciousness awareness, band as poseur or something. All it left me was counting the time down until it was done and rueing the fact that I thought the show would start on time and rushed up to see Kudu. Another good call by yours truly.

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The beautiful lead singer of Kudu, Sylvia Gordon

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Sylvia looking angelic

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Drummer Deantoni Parks

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Sampler/synth man Nick Kasper

Ahh, Kudu, how you saved the night! I am planning a post dedicated to this group in the near future, so I won't say too much right now. I will say that this trio from Brooklyn is my favorite thing going right now, and MC can attest to the fact that I have become a Kuduhead (tie-in to the Grateful Dead week, yea!), following them to all of their gigs in NYC. This is like the 6th time I have seen them, and each performance is better than the next. Best of all, MC has come around with each listen, and validates the fact that this music can appeal to everyone with good ears. Anyway, Kudu put on their best set yet, and even had an NYC crowd dancing. Yes, yes, I was shocked too. More to come on this group.

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The Juan MacLean working their machines

After a brief DJ set by Tim Sweeney, host of Beats in Space, the lights dimmed, the crowd got bigger (or so it seemed) and our jackets disappeared. In an inexplicable move by a member of the security staff who felt that our jackets on the wall next to the trash were "in the way" and had "tripped someone," he picked them up and put them in front of the stage in the midst of the crowd. Thanks dude, keep up the good work.

Unfortunately, that was the most exciting part of The Juan MacLean show. I liked their music on the DFA compilations, and love that DFA sound as much as everyone else does. Unfortunately, what I heard Saturday night was much more dance-y than punk, much more smooth and jammy than what I expected. The rest of the crowd clearly disagreed for the record, as the place was packed and dancing. The whole thing seemed like a sanitized house music for white, straight kids.

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Okay, we are going to get into the Grateful Dead tonight or early tomorrow. As for shows, not sure what lies ahead in the near future. Lots of great stuff here in the illadelph and in NYC, and I'm looking forward to continuing to get out and see as much as possible. Thanks again to MC for trusting my choices, even when they are dead wrong.

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