A couple weeks ago, Anamanaguchi played to a feisty, sold-out crowd at the Knitting Factory. They've been called 8-bit and chiptune, a style marked by the bleeps and bloops of a Super Nintendo, and often dismissed as a novelty. But unlike the Dan Deacons and Crystal Castles of the world, 'guchi are grounded more in rockist melodies than (just) electro-induced seizures, using video game synth as the topping, rather than the meat, of their sound.
The brunt of their music is composed of the more standard guitar and drum (there's generally no singing, although they pulled off a walloping cover of M83's "Don't Save Us From The Flames"), forming a backbone for the electronic effects. While much of the show was at a frenetic, jump-in-place pace, things got pretty interesting when they slowed down. The highlight was a new song, "UNME," which built on a twinkling hook that morphed into a churning, almost housey blast. They're not quite shoegaze, but the sweeping ambition was a proud successor, and they seem like the perfect candidate for soundtracking the video game version of Scott Pilgrim vs. the World.
Openers Lionshare were an absurd rap bunch, complete with nonsensical lyrics and meow samples. It was mildly entertaining, but not really my thing. Alas, the So So Glos went on early (apparently they had to be somewhere), and I missed them. Next time!
Head over to nyctaper for a full recording of the , and check out "UNME" below.
Rest of the pictures after the jump.