Tuesday, July 01, 2008

Interlude: Wide Angle

I'm behind. No doubt the sheer number of concerts I've been to has something to do with that state, but I will catch up. This show happened an embarrassingly long time ago (May 25th), but it was an anomaly as far as genre, so it remains pretty distinct. Although my tastes are becoming increasingly more electronica-oriented, the sad reality is I'm generally not going to get in to a decent DJ set, until next year. While a mainly indie rock diet when it comes to shows is far from terrible, there's something to be said for some beeps and bloops.

Telefon Tel Aviv

Telefon Tel Aviv create spacious, chill out music. As the name implies, said music has hints of worldly influences, and overall you could call them a more glitchy Thievery Corporation. TTV doesn't quite bring the same crowd onstage, however, as it was just the duo of Joshua Eustis and Charles Cooper. Furthermore, they played all new songs, but presented them in a way that they were just about what I expected - hushed vocalizing and trippy soundscapes, with a healthy dose of drums 'n and bass. I'm biased in favor of this sort of stuff, but I think it's got healthy, widespread appeal. At worst it's background music and in this case, it was much more.

MP3: Telefon Tel Aviv - My Week Beats Your Year
MP3: Telefon Tel Aviv - Bubble and Spike
MySpace: Telefon Tel Aviv
Official Site: Telefon Tel Aviv


A year ago, it would have been impossible to imagine Apparat, the alias of Sasha Ring, as anything more than a DJ. That's not to diminish his production skills - his collaboration with Ellen Allien, Orchestra of Bubbles, remains one of my favorite albums, electronic or otherwise. But his solo work didn't quite have the same pop sensibility, until his most recent album, Walls. His instrumentals are heartbreakingly gorgeous; songs like "Fractales" are downright cinematic. It's the addition of singer Raz Ohara that elevates the other stuff from techno to pop, as Raz's slinky, R&B-inflected vocals bring to mind Prince. So it was a relief to see both men in attendance, as well as a live drummer, making the Apparat set resemble a traditional set, albeit with more laptop than usual.

A personal highlight was an organic rendition of "Rotary," from Orchestra. The song's already exhilarating on album, and hearing that drum pattern and the warbling synth live was just awesome. Virtually all of the other material came from Walls, which was fine by me. Raz initially sounded a bit off, but recovered nicely in the second half, which included the great track, "Hailin from the Edge." Sasha has developed into quite a crooner himself, although he uses his voice more for melody, rather than vehicle for lyrics. But when it comes to Apparat, lyrics are secondary.

MP3: Apparat - Fractales, Pt. 1
MP3: Apparat - Hailin from the Edge
MP3: Ellen Allien & Apparat - Rotary
MySpace: Apparat
Official Site: Apparat


Anonymous said...

Hailin and Rotary mp3s have titles mixed up

Roland said...

Fixed, thanks!

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