Gig Bites

Because I’ve had the curious problem of not being able to write about each new music event I’ve attended because I’m hung up about not having written about the last one, here are some quick memory-filing notes about the last bunch of events I’ve been to, just to clear my mental RAM in preparation for Good Vibrations and Mosaic. (And in April, All Tomorrow’s Parties!)

  • Eclectic Method (Zouk, 10 Nov 06): After two years of waiting to see them, I was bitterly disappointed. Too much lazy use of catchy crowd-pleaser beats like from Drop It Like It’s Hot as a substitute for doing stuff that was actually interesting.

  • Gamelan Shokbrekker (Esplanade, 25 Nov 06): The bare bones breakdown is that it was a collaboration between an Indonesian gamelan orchestra and Norwegian free jazz musicians, but the incredible synergy the performers managed to create between their different musical styles is really just something you had to be there to understand. (If you’re interested though, try the recordings here from their 2006 London Jazz Festival performance.) I love Mogwai and all, but don’t underestimate the intricate mesmerizing wall of sound a determined gamelan orchestra is capable of. Gig of the year for me.

  • Kid Koala (Red Dot Design Museum, 20 Dec 06): About four times as crowded as his first visit here, and not even half as good. Still, his inherent adorability always makes me want to get all Elmira on his ass.

  • DJ Kentaro (Ministry of Sound, 8 Feb 07): His On The Wheels Of Solid Steel mixtape’s been one of my iPod stalwarts since its release, so I was pretty excited to see him. He was brought in as part of some HP promo event presumably intended to demonstrate how technology brings da world togetha, so there were performances by various artists going on sequentially in Singapore, KL, Korea, Hong Kong and Taiwan, and linked by live video hookups between the various countries. Unfortunately through cluelessness I think we must have managed to miss the live transmissions of both the performances we were there to see (Kentaro and Hifana), so thank God Kentaro came on again after the live transmission was over and did another set, which I thoroughly enjoyed. Hip-hop, old and new drum’n’bass, club salsa (I think it was, but all Latin music sounds the same to me so I could be wrong), Coldcut’s Timber (wish he’d also shown the video though), bits of that organ sample, everything got seamlessly and effortlessly mixed with just the right amount of turntable pyrotechnics. And all for only about 30 people on the dancefloor. Party on, Singapore.