Monday, October 4, 2010

Neon Indian Free Show @ South End Power Station

Sunday afternoon after the open market in the South End, I wandered over to the free show thrown by Urban Outfitters and Levis held in an old warehouse. This was one of their"Secret Generator Shows" that I started explaining to people as a "not so secret show powered by a generator because it sounds cool".  Urban Outfitters spends three days showing you pictures or hints of the venue making you think you have to guess where the concert is. But on Friday they straight up tell you the location making the previous three days seem like the most pointless thing. Because it was. Knowing two days in advance didn't make a big difference. Read the rest of the review after the jump...

However, I was excited about the choice of the power station. It is an really interesting, historic, open warehouse of a space and I had always wondered what the city did with it. The tiny gathering of people seemed funny in the space at 4pm on a Sunday afternoon, like maybe this was the wrong location after all and we were being tricked. But all the equipment was there, it's just that like most Sunday's in Boston people have a way of not showing up. 

Somewhat influenced by Music For Ant's recent post where an indie music neophyte gives input on some of the biggest hits of the year. I decided to transcribe my friend's comments on the concert. Allie recently moved from Denver and is a big country fan. More along the lines of pop-country.

While I got into my fair share of chillwave this summer, Neon Indian was not something I really listened to, so my commentary about the music runs fairly parallel to what Allie had to say. She was just far more honest about how she said it.

During the first song, Allie said: "It reminds me of Miss Congeniality when she plays the glasses filled with water." The song did have that strange high pitched sound to it.

When they played "Deadbeat Summer" Allie asked if he was really even singing. "I can't understand anything. Maybe his mic isn't on? It just sounds noisy." I laughed and told her that's just the style of music. To which she responded, "I don't really like the noisy stuff or when it's too base-y."

We stuck around for about half the show, mostly for the people watching and checking out all the hipster outfits. To the girl in the gold sparkly jacket, I admire your ability to wear a jacket like that on a Sunday afternoon with such confidence and I mean that in all seriousness. To all the girls wearing vintage leather lace up shoes, are they comfortable? and do they smell when you buy them? Sorry, but as a simple t-shirt and jeans kind of person this counter culture style never ceases to amaze me. Not to mention looking back on these clothes in 20, heck even 5 years, what will we all think?

Back to the music...I found that the reverb and feedback got to be really annoying after a couple songs, it's not something I would ever listen to for an extended period of time but a one song here or there was ok, and some of it seemed fun to dance to. It was also kind of cool to watch them play their instruments of choice to a crowd, I was curious how chillwave would translate on stage and now I know. Some of it was really interesting to see but a few more traditional instruments would have been more intriguing.

Interestingly, as we walked away from the concert, the brick alleyways that the sound was bouncing off of, sounded much better than being in the venue. I was a good 400 yards away and the music sounded much more "chill" and dreamy bouncing off the bricks. Somebody should have recorded it from there and started a whole new kind of genre, it could absolutely take off. Pop-country fan, Allie thought it this echoier, less base-y music would be good to play in the background. Maybe it could work.

So maybe you were wondering why I was there, if I don't really care for the music?  Well, I am a sucker for anything labeled as free and I enjoy live music and trying new things. I'm glad I went but I'm not paying to see a band like that any time soon. Below is one of the songs I sometimes find myself listening to, Sleep Paralysis, you can download here if you want.

If you want to see really good pictures check out indie enthusiast and concert photog, Luke Ryan's flickr stream HERE

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