Monday, June 15, 2009

Show Review: Dan Deacon at Sonar

Special guest reviewer and contest winner Matt Weinschenk was there to take in all the action Saturday night. Here's his take on the multi-faceted event:

On Saturday, Sonar hosted Taxlo’s Summer Blowout with a fully loaded line-up including Dan Deacon, Black Dice, Thieves Like Us, Martyn, Scottie B, Get ‘Em Mamis, Booman, DAT Politics and more.

Michigan-based Awesome Color opened. With driving drums that never took a breath (in a good way), they sounded like The Stooges with some experimental effects thrown on top. The only downside was that they only had time for four songs.

Next was DAT Politics and were, for me, the pleasant surprise of the night. Their synth and vocodor-rich Euro-dance energy got the crowd moving with a set long enough for front woman Claude Pailliot to induce a healthy case of woman-rocking-on-stage-syndrome in most men in the crowd. A great deal of fun all around.

After that, it was Black Dice. They were too loud. I know that sounds ridiculous, but someone cranked it up about 5 notches after DAT Politics left and went for a drink. At any point, half the crowd was holding their ears. A healthy stream of people headed out and I actually saw 2 friends arguing over the one set of earplugs they had. It’s a shame, because it was too loud to listen to the subtleties of Black Dice’s electric experimental noise punk. So before you rag on me for being too old, ask someone who was there.

Finally, Dan Deacon took the stage, or at least the floor in front of the stage as usual. His recent Bromst tour featured a full 14-piece live band. Now he’s solo and played a few Bromst tracks on his traditional equipment, meaning we won’t be deprived of Bromst in future shows. Deacon had a few problems with crowd control, including "Crystal Cat" cut short by a crowd member jostling his electronics.

Hopefully his rising popularity won’t force him to switch to a traditional performance too soon. Dan Deacon certainly didn’t disappoint, with a high-energy set and a group interpretative dance to top it off.

My only regret is missing the Get ‘Em Mamis. My friend may have accidentally bought them a round of Patron shots. (It was definitely G.E.M., but who paid for the shots is still unclear.) Either way, they were having enough fun in the crowd that their show makes the “can’t miss” list for next time.

Don't forget to check out Chrissy's fantastic photo set of the event right here.


Anonymous said...

this is totally contrary to some accounts. seems dan was a bit more than frustrated with the crowd and vibe of this night:

Brett said...

Ouch, I heard there was some tension, but man. Sucks to hear Dan's getting terrible vibes from the place where he made his name.

I can understand people being overly amped for this show, but whats the point of pushing towards the front? I know the green skull is cool and all, but lets not forget the point...

Brett said...


Kid on the right is either A) Pushing backwards with all his might to keep kids back or B) Plotting an evil scheme of rage against Deacon.

Chrissy said...

I wanted to turn some of my pictures into an animated GIF but I'm lazy/don't feel like downloading whatever software that requires.

There's also a third image I didn't upload in this sequence. Dan is clearly pushing that girl away from his table.

Dan tried repeatedly to get everyone to back off and chill out. Sucks that they wouldn't. I had fun behind the barrier/on the stage, though.

Andy Dunlap said...

gonna have to disagree about black dice / their set was totally rad / loud sure / but rad

and dan was having a bad night / that shit happens / he's still the boss of baltimore