Sunday, June 24, 2007
DJ Shadow & Cut Chemist
Every year we like to go to the Hollywood Bowl at least 5 or 6 times. This summer, the kickoff to the bowl season started with the opening KCRW concert headlining DJ Shadow and Cut Chemist.
The most interesting part of the evening was taking the subway from Pasadena all the way to Hollywood. Being good citizens, we paid the fare both ways. I later learned that paying the fare was "optional." Actually, it's required, but there is no person or machine around to check if someone has actually purchased the ticket. Interesting. So, anyways, the subway is NICE! Reminds me of a mix between San Francisco and Hong Kong without the crowds. Try it sometime.
I've seen Cut Chemist perform live at a small venue in San Francisco, and he totally rocks the house. I've also listened to several of DJ Shadow's compilations and really liked the mixes he throws down. Their performance at the Hollywood Bowl, however, left something to be desired, as their intro melodies and vaguely familiar overtones set me up for a climax that I never received. I kept waiting and waiting to hear a driving bass line or drum loop that got me out of my seat...but it never came. I think the reason is that this show was meant to be more of an artistic duet of sorts, with the Shadow & Chemist showing off what is possible when all you have to play are found 45's, eight turntables, and an effects processor. Yes, it is amazing what small snippets of sound can be milked from a 45 of Etta James and mixed into a 45 sample of Bizarre Love Triangle, but when you take the parts of a song that are so obscure that they are almost unrecognizable, it doesn't make for very discernable listening. But I will say that the concert was much more interesting after a couple glasses of wine and a very strange and strong German Beer.