Dabrye/Telefon Tel Aviv/T. Raumschmiere/Knamiproko/Richard Devine (dj set)

Fashionably late becomes "who cares anymore."
Eyedrum, Atlanta, Thursday, September 12

An electronic show of this magnitude only comes to Atlanta once every few months, so even though I hadn't heard much recorded work from a few of these artists, I knew that Eyedrum would be the place to be (and it usually is) for chance-taking electronic tunes. Local openers Knamiproko are a three-man musical ensemble whose live performance mode, as near as I can tell, involves 'jamming' over some pre-arranged beat patterns and chord structures. Backed by local video artist Shana Wood, Knamiproko played for what seemed like a very long time. While I'm interested to hear what congealed studio versions of their jams sound like, they still seem to be trying to find their rhythm live. Richard Devine, local IDM luminary who was scheduled to DJ to open the show apparently showed up late and only got his iPod/Laptop DJ set up rigged after the opening act. His 'set' consisted of glitchy beats and pitch-bending synths, all of which were nice in a head-nodding kind of way, but none of which were identifiable as a particular artist. If live musicians get upset when DJs take center stage to play records, I can only wonder what DJs must think of a guy who gets booked to play mp3 setlists from his iPod!
After a rockstarishly long interlude in which it seemed like the members of Telefon Tel Aviv were in absolutely no hurry to get started, the lights dimmed and the respectable crowd poured in for what was to be the main act. The band of guitars, bass, keys and laptops launched into their signature set of soothing melodies and DSP beats, and the crowd rocked back to listen. TTA came across as a groovier version of Slowdive with 2002 style glitch beats, without ever sounding forced. It was a sound for the moment, to be sure. I couldn't help but wonder though if the same group of guys wouldn't have written the same exact batch of songs in 1995 using scratchy trip hop loops, and if they wouldn't be writing a similar batch of songs in 5 years using whatever new software will be available at the time. All speculation about TTA's place in a stylistic timeline aside, they put on a great show and even got coaxed into an encore by enthusiastic fans.
T. Raumschmiere followed suit and waited another excessively long time before getting started, by which time at least half of the audience was heading for the hills. He opened with a blast of digital noise and kicked right in with loopy, dirty house for DHR fans. The thick textures and muscular 4 on the floor blended well, but would be the end of my evening of laptop madness. Unfortunately, Dabrye's spot on the bill seemed almost like an afterthought by midnight, as most of the crowd had dissipated, lost interest, and gone home. A shame, but a lesson learned by the promoters for next time.