Thursday, September 02, 2004

This is a gift from a girl. The only thing I love more than the moon just may be kitties. Kitties. Ooooh, kitties...such soft, furry, ingenious little dictators. Kitties often seem to hate me these days, but I keep chasing them, petting them, hugging them, just so I can let them dig in and lounge against my belly and make that ingratiating purring sound, halfway between an outboard motor and an old motel bed massager. That sound, those vibrations--make it all okay in a way that words or human contact never really can. Even if all the kitties seem to usually just run for cover lately, I will always be one to chase close behind, just for the chance to hold them in the unforgiving prison of my arms.

Speaking of collections of cute animals, I saw a regular gaggle of them at Emo's in Austin a couple nights ago in the form of Animal Collective, Black Dice and another band called Porch Fock (or Frog). The AC left me a bit flat. Don't get me wrong here, but any cute costumes and my two favorite songs ("Leaf House," "We Tigers") off the new record were MIA, leading me directly to the age old questions, "Can they truly recreate that bouncy, layered vocal whoop funk thing live?" and "What's the point without costumes?" But all funnin' aside, what they did do was create a strangely harmonic, constantly flowing disjointed pop racket that I quite enjoyed, but I could also see how my AC virgin rockin' buddy in attendance was a bit less than impressed, especially in light of the infectious space punk angst quotient of the trombone/scuzz inflected Porch Fock (or Frog). They were actually pretty rad, had me thinking, "We're in the midst of another one of them art punk revivals, are we not?" as well as "This may not be such a bad thing." And finally, "Fuck the Strokes."

Black Dice was a pulverizing subharmonic mudslide of heartbeat-skipping power electronics and dissonant bliss washes. Three guys--one on guitar, the other two working a bank of effects pedals and samplers--created a racket that was just phenomenal from where I was standing about ten feet from the stage. Bubbling, coagulated pools of sound so thick I was walking across them and slowly sinking, eyes closed, head back, body asway as I went down for the count over and over. The live performance definitely fills in the gaps left by their oft fascinating, yet still uneven, studio releases. Those with pacemakers need not apply.

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