Gigs, dance, art

June 8th, 2008: Buraka Som Sistema / Sage Francis / B Dolan / El Guincho / High Places

@ parc de la villette

Free outdoors gigs are back again, even the weather wasn’t that summerish, though the sun did make a token appearance. It started with a disappointment, because I really wanted to see Dan Deacon, but he canceled his show a few days ago. That letdown was short lived enough though, because I liked High Places a lot. Part had to do with the percussive side of it, underlined by the sticks even though it was more pads than actual drums. Lots of electronics, not the experimental ones I’m more familiar with, but the singer has a nice voice and it all fell together nicely enough.

El Guincho didn’t live up to all the hype surrounding him, at least for me. He said he wasn’t used to playing outside of the club scene, and I can understand why. Party music, decent at that, but the beats were borderline moronic in their single-mindedness. A club would have been better suited, his music didn’t have much to it when scrutinized too intently. I guess that would have been par for the course but I kept thinking of Filastine and that comparison was cruel. Now that’s some party music I can enjoy on several levels. And I somehow believe he could pull that kind of gig off.

Then it was off to a bigger stage for B Dolan, who was another pleasant surprise. He might make a fool of himself with ridiculous costumes, but he’s a good MC and I had a good time listening to him. I had never heard of the guy, but I’ll try to fix that lack of knowledge soon. He seemed to have brought along by Sage Francis, as they both took the stage at the end of the latter’s set. He was the main event as far as I was concerned, and didn’t disappoint. He’s so good and it was heartwarming to hear some quality hip-hop in this place for a change. And hearing people scream “yes we can” was nice as well, a feeling of hope mixed with realizing it will be downhill from here. My only gripe — and it applies to both MCs — is that I wish they had teamed up with an actual DJ or two. Throwing in a few B-Boys and graf artists would have been even better, but why do these MCs stick with a laptop is beyond me. It’s not for lack of talented ones being around — at least around them, because it’s been a rare treat around here. I would just love to see DJ Alf, hopefully at 4:19, but any time would do.

After that, I had a hard time enjoying Buraka Som Sistema. I still think it would have been better suited to a later day, like in actual summer. Maybe coming back to such less demanding music was just beyond my ability. I do think I could have enjoyed it on its own, but here it just felt like coming down after Sage Francis, so I didn’t like it much while being fully aware I was to blame.


June 9, 2008 - Posted by | Music | , , , , , ,

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