Brodinski, TJR, Bones, LBCK, and MISTER BLAQK
The Yost Theater
March 14th, 2012
Opener Mister Blaqk started the night with his short hypestep
mix before giving way to fellow opener LBCK's electro shuffling and swift dance
beat riffs. A sprinkling of glitch here,
a dash of some groove oriented pitter there; welcome to the video game
soundtrack MDMA and vodka composed. Some less frantic noises began
rearing through as LBCK was making his preparations to part, but I had to do a walk-through of the venue.
Upstairs was a gathering the local cadre of “American Pie” sequel auditionees taking part in the bastardization of dub
reggae and UK garage. My personal feelings regarding the music wasn't what completely
drew my ire; it was the small crowd's reaction as well. The flailing, Fred Durst
impersonations, and body spasms were not for me.
Back downstairs more poppy electro filled up the sounds of
the room, but blogosphere champion and LA favorite Bones was readying to make
his appearance and play the role of Superman. Bones spent his entire time on
stage delivering an eclectic combination of deep bass and even deeper tech vibes.
The crowd stayed amped and engaged the entire time, proving that slower house and
varied rhythms can be just more effective–if not more so–thatthe usual vacuum molestations.
When he was taking centerstage, calculated dance music with actual substance
was actually obtaining a small victory at the Yost.
Once the performer of skeletal namesake took off, TJR took
over with a hard bombardment of post-Detroit house. What you hear making the
rounds at both unsanctioned backyard gatherings and massive raves emanated from
the speakers, sending my cognitive processes for a spin. His sounds blasted and
battered in the vein of a never ending and always pulsating musical alarm. Maybe
it was my anticipation for the headliner, or maybe he brings some taste along
with him when he gets into the dirtier sides of house, but TJR's DJ skills were just
far too potent for someone who wasn't even on a well-traveled level yet. The enjoyable globe-trotting rhythms ripped
from non-American didn't hurt, either.
Brodinski started his set once TJR's last song drowned out,
and he started it on his creative mettle alone, without any sort of aid outside
of the materials he brought with him. Flashy backdrops and Wonderland-themed
visuals must not have been to his liking.
Speeding rounds of synthetic drums and bass shot out from the sound system. Not
even the fluttering of vocal lines from Avicii's mega-hit “Levels” allowed
light to pierce through. This was the sound of dance music's subterranean level,
and production gloss was nowhere to be found. The Broski's (his name which I hope he prefers to be called
when he enters Orange County) techno terrorizing ran unabated; his knob twists
bringing beats both as cold and sharp as steel. “Bromance” cohort Gesaffelstein's
remixes and original works such as “Control Movement” thrashed the
unfortunately under-packed dancefloor. The
French–they used to win over our hearts by being romantic, now they win them
over through unmitigated electro might.
Critic's Bias: This is the least weed I have smelled at a
show in years. My sinuses were finely allowed to dance freely.
Overheard in the Crowd: The word “bro” and “dude” had to
have been said thousands of time, if my entirely unscientific calculations can
be held true. Seriously though, can't we at least think of something else to
call someone? Maybe your friend has a name they were given at one point or the
other? Maybe not, I could be wrong.
Random Notebook Dump: I almost expected more intimidating
gestures from Brodinski, considering the sound of his set. Maybe some
spell-conjuring motions or a cape or something? Just kidding, really.