Tuesday, June 22, 2010

100 Shows of 2010 - #35: Neon Indian/Wild Nothing @ Sonar, 6/13/10

As some of you already know, it was my birthday last week. And naturally, it’s a big enough birthday that I deemed it only right to go to as many shows as possible during birthday week to properly celebrate another year on this lovely planet of ours. So when my bestest friend Laura invited me up to her neck of the woods (AKA Baltimore) for the Neon Indian and Wild Nothing show, I decided an evening of ridiculously bitchin’ dancefloor action was just what the kickoff to birthday week should be.

MINI RECAP: Neon Indian = Neonically Neato! Wild Nothing = Synthily Sassy! Overall score: B+.

One thing I hadn’t realized before this show (shame on me) is the fact that Wild Nothing hails from my very own Commonwealth of Virginia. Another excellent band doin’ the state proud, it sure does warm the cockles of my little heart. Also warming the cockles of my little heart was Wild Nothing’s sound, which could have been coming out of early 1980s Britain. Heavy in slinky synths and kicky little riffs, the band had a consistently good dance beat and a little attitude. At times I heard varying shades of A Flock of Seagulls (minus the ridiculous haircuts, of course), Psychedelic Furs, and New Order. The packed house and I really kinda dug on this band. Their songs were sweet, yet glamorous at the same time, making for a really charming vibe. And who doesn’t love a synthed-up Fleetwood Mac cover? I’m so very pleased to have seen them do their first Baltimore show.

Neon Indian was also in Baltimore for the very first time. They got the party started right away, with their sensational little beats and buoyant stage presence. Visual stimulation was provided in the guise of garishly neon patterns projected on screens on the sides of the stage, giving an apt visual representation of the band’s music. The kids were definitely down with Neon Indian, and at times the dancefloor was heaving with motion, as the crowd worked up a sweat to the endless beats. The Neon Indian sound is a danceable dream, and it’s just such happy music (musically speaking, that is, not necessarily lyrically!). I’d liken it to super rad, candy-coated rave pop, totally perfect for inciting crazy dance moves, and though there was some fluorescent jewelry the kids thankfully left the pacifiers at home. I was a little perplexed by the dude walking around with duct tape all over his head, but to each their own I suppose. The “really enthusiastic” crowd got the band back for an encore, which just meant more dancing and more sweating.

It was a divine evening, my dears, and a perfect way to kick off birthday week. These two bands were tailor made to tour together. Somewhat fittingly, I suppose, a darling young thing sidled up to me during Wild Nothing’s set to attempt to sweet-talk me into buying him ciggies, which I gently refused (we don’t encourage underage naughtiness here, after all).

mp3: Terminally Chill (Neon Indian from Psychic Chasms)

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