"It is true, and thus the question of whether it is sad or happy has no meaning whatever."
Bernhard Schlink

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Sunday, February 18, 2007

Steve Aoki, The Brazilian Girls, and Ladytron 

To everyone (all 500 of you know who you are) who failed to take my extra tickets to this show, an object lesson: this was, without question, one of the most amazing concerts I have ever experienced.

Aoki was spinning on the small stage upstairs when we arrived, playing an lighthearted (but heavy-beated?) set of dance music. Accompanied by a rotating pair of backup dancers. The set was a blast, and I would have stayed there all night dancing, if we had not suddenly noticed that everyone else was streaming towards the exits.

Intrigued we followed, and soon learned that the actual show was going to be somewhere else - on the main stage of which we had neither seen nor heard previous mention. Lucky we made it!

The Brazilian Girls were up first, opening with "Sexy Asshole" and continuing with some combination of music and performance art about begging for pussy and marijuana. The former visibly unnerved many of the trendier gay boys in the audience, thus making even bigger fans of my companion and I. There was clearly not pre-determined set list; the performance just flowed even as the band members visibly argued about where to go next.

The rest of their set was equally superb, and certainly aided by the scorching hotness of drummer Aaron Johnston. They played for about an hour, followed by a 45-or-so minute intermission, during which Aoki again took to the upstairs stage.

Then came Ladytron. What can I say about this set? They played for a full two hours, never missing a beat.
Most of the songs sounded remarkably like the album versions (I'd thought there had been more sound engineering involved - it seems that no, it's just their voices), except, most notably "He Took Her to a Movie." I love this song, in its original form, for, among other things, its sparse creepiness. The live version was busy, loud, and with two voices instead of one. It sounded awesome, like the sad creepiness of the original had grown into more of a dirty-old-man-in-the-park(-with-a-synthesizer-and-feedbacky-amp) creepiness. Did I mention they played for two hours?

We left the venue with sore legs, sweat-drenched clothes, and big goofy grins (sorry kids, my camera stayed home, you have to imagine this one!). Which we promptly stuffed with eggs, grits, and toast at a nearby diner. Sometimes a serious rock-n-roll ass kicking is just what the doctor ordered.

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