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The Dirty Projectors @ La Sala Rosa... oh and Xiu Xiu too.

Posted by Nika / October 23, 2006

photos by Carole de Gagné

Another hectic evening at the Sala: doors open at 9 and three bands later you’re completely wiped. In silent-and-unnoticed-by-anyone-but-myself protest, I have started skipping the first opening band. According to the set times and my actual time of arrival that night, I had technically missed both openers. So when the unannounced mystery band took the stage and proceeded to blast my socks into oblivion, I assumed I had made it just in time to catch headliners Xiu Xiu (pronounce it “shoe-shoe”).

Right as the band we were watching introduced their last song they added, “Stay around for Xiu Xiu, they’re up next.” One exchanged goofy look with my photographer later, I realize it would have paid to research the bands before I review the show.

Mystery solved, they were openers the Dirty Projectors: a Brooklyn-blenderized version of old Genesis and Phish and Paul Simon and Aaron Neville (oh yeah, I said Aaron Neville) and everything you’ve ever heard before in your life played all at the same time. The sounds they emitted didn’t seem to make any sense at first, I actually wondered if my earplugs were distorting the music. Nope, they sounded louder and just as effed when I tentatively removed my right earplug. If I had listened to this band’s recording without seeing them first, I might have gotten seriously confused, as if the whole thing was a figment of my imagination. Their music is insanely advanced art rock and highly expressive, stemming from far-away places and being executed in the most fastidious manner. All this lending the listener a chance to experience the beauty of purposeful mistakes. A never-ending display of percussion instruments, 3 guitars, one funky-ass bass, the most crunked-out drummer in the world (“Do you think he’s just fucking with the band or does he really want to play like that?”), 2 harmony lasses and one warbling lead singer. By the time the second song hit, I had gotten it, I had found the rhythm, boom, I was in love.


By the time Xiu Xiu started playing, we had already watched them redo their sound check for 10 minutes and actually, we weren’t quite sure if what they were playing wasn’t still soundcheck. The duo plays around with the musical dualities of beauty and deformity, from hauntingly gentle melodies to shocking blasts of distortion. Damn this band is dark ‘n’ twisted and damnit if the audience wasn’t just so enthralled with their uninviting performance. These drama queens are so emo it pained me to stay until the end of the show. Watching their indulgent, cacophonious self-examinations, I opted to listen to my own inner-me and left to catch some Stephen Colbert instead of disturbing others with my disdain.

Colbert, on the other hand, succeeded in holding my attention until the end of his show.



Rolin / February 4, 2015 at 02:08 am
I'm really into phogatrophy and would quite like a job involving it however i do NOT want to take pictures of people (weddings and stuff), i like taking arty/creative pictures. I also love writing and I have been thinking of writing for a teenage magazine and hopefully being able to get phogatrophy in there as well. Has anybody got any ideas on what job I could do that involves my kind of phogatrophy and writing and how I could get there. At the moment I'm 16..
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