Macrosick(Pt. 2)


April 22, 2005

Local rock band Macrosick has been honing their act, so Friday's performance opening for The Walkmen at Twiropa was a big deal. I haven't seen Macrosick before, but I can only think the show was a progression and not a regression.

The sextet played music that often inspired dancing. They used programmed music and beats, along with an acoustic drummer. They had a detached, no-wave thing happening, but in all of their artifices, they weren't afraid to employ pop song structures. "We Never Started" had bright synthesizer tones that were radio-friendly. They still used minor chords for a unique nihilistic spaciness, though.

Back to the artifices. Sunglasses, white clothes, a blonde fro, computerized dance moves for computerized rhythms, and video that hit the band before the screen behind them. The video was courtesy of "live visual manipulator" Jonathan Odom.

Like Devo before them, Macrosick mixed dance beats with social commentary well. Still, Macrosick had a distinct sound because they were able to distill their many influences so well--Kraftwerk, Fugazi, Gang of Four, Depeche Mode...

Lead singer/programmer Adam LaClave gave off a confident aura with his condascending character, but he still seemed a little nervous. The crowd appreciated Macrosick, but there was enough awkward silence in between songs to think there were a few dissenters in the audience.

The highlight of the set was "Under These Skies," a driving, dark song whose lyrics were sad and harsh. The listener was washed with cymbals and a rockin' melody while LaClave's distorted vocals spread over the music like a paintball against a canvas. Blips and video game bleeps mixed in with ominous, stalking guitars.

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