Monday, June 6, 2016

Moogfest Day 2: Grimes / Denzel Curry / Gary Numan in Downtown Durham - 5/20/2016

Moogfest - Day 2
Featuring Grimes, Denzel Curry, and Gary Numan
Downtown Durham
5/20/2016

My good man Brian came in from Wilmington for the next two nights of Moogfest.  I typically go to shows solo, so it was a nice change of pace to have one of my best friends there for the old man version of rocking and/or rolling. 

We decided to start our night with Grimes.  To be honest, neither one of us knew a thing about her (I actually wasn't even sure if it was a her or a them going into the show), and I mostly went in with an open mind...a mind that closed fairly fast, to be honest.  We lasted two songs, but I was over it halfway through the first.  All of the music appeared to be pre-recorded, and when I say all of the music I'm even including the vocals.  She might have sang along during parts of the song, but there were multiple times (just in the brief time we were there) that the mic was a good two feet from her face but the vocals were still perfect.  It was basically a dance & lip sync performance, which I suppose I might have come around to accepting if I actually liked how it sounded.  I was certainly in the minority in this opinion though - the place was packed and the crowd was eating it up.  I guess I can't always be hip to what the kids like...

We walked next door to Motorco to see what was happening there - I knew it would be hip hop, but I didn't know anything about the artist performing - Denzel Curry.  Turns out it was a young dude out of Miami with great dreads who bounced around the stage like he was on a cocktail of Red Bull and cocaine.  I've never been that great at describing rappers, but the dude had an aggressive, fast style - a style I greatly prefer compared to the stoned mushmouths that seem to get so much of the shine these days.  The music was often some sort of swirly, spacey electropop backed by heavy beats...that's probably a terrible description, but it's what my dumb brain heard.  We took in about a half-dozen tracks before moving on, he gets an enthusiastic thumbs up from me. 

We headed to the Carolina Theatre from there for Gary Numan, but got there early enough to see some of the "band" before him, Grouper.  And by "band" I mean a woman sitting on the stage, surrounded by electronics, playing music that sounded exactly like one of those CDs of rain forest noises some folks use to go to sleep.  It was, well...there it was. It was a thing.  I was mostly confused, and sleepy.

Finally though, Gary Numan. I liked being up front at Motorco the night before, but I think this theatre was a better setting for him. It certainly was more conducive to his crazy light show; it also didn't hurt he spent the night playing his classic album "The Pleasure Principle" in full. We were in the middle of the second deck, and the sound was much better than the night before, which is probably to be expected given both the better acoustics and a better location in the venue.  Let it also be stated that no matter how many times you've heard "Cars," seeing it performed live is one of life's great treats.  The night might have started off comically bad, but this more than made up for it.

1 comment:

Anonymous said...

Grimes is the worst-- she just shows up with her iPod. She preaches about not needing help from men, and maybe she needn't. She still lip syncs to everything.