Tag Archives: Moby
Broods – Mercury Lounge – March 3, 2014
Last night at Mercury Lounge you could have run directly into the future with the New Zealand band Broods making their debut New York City appearance. Two of the vice presidents for alternative and Top 40 radio promotion from Capitol Music Group stood in the back, almost unavoidable if also hidden in plain sight. Representing the two pathways forward for the band—alternative radio and heavy-rotation at Top 40—a Capitol signee at the close of last year, these two wizards of the radio dial likely control as much of the group’s future as a major commercial act as the duo themselves. It was hard to avoid this sense of becoming from a group that by virtue of sharing producer Joel Little, Oceania and a digital snare drum, recall something of the mercurial, stupefying success of Lorde.
R&B aesthetics in alternative circles may well be a bubble, but Capitol has already doubled down on brother-sister-act Broods. Although for the 200 new converts packing the room, theirs was a different sort of business, a chance to buy low on—to buy intimacy from—a band seemingly about to head for your radio dial and living room. This was like listening to Chvrches in Glasgow two years ago or Lorde in Brooklyn last spring. Everyone arrived chasing some form of the future. Broods opened with “Never Gonna Change,” Georgia Nott’s vocals oozing fecundity if not outright sex, a mixture of footnotes from Dido to Imogen Heap. The sound registered somewhere between the aforementioned Ella Yelich-O’Connor and James Blake—slow-dance music for kids who hate to slow dance. Broods moved through “Pretty Thing” and “Sleep Baby Sleep,” the first owing much to Moby’s Play, the second featuring stirring vocals that would easily be at home on No Angel.
The closing movement of the set, a pithy eight songs, was highlighted by “Taking You There” (think: Avicii’s “Wake Me Up filled up with cold medicine), “Coattails,” another Dido-indebted jam, and “Bridges,” the song that earned the Capitol Records signing. “Coattails” featured the lyric of the evening, “a hit between the eyes,” before the whirring downbeat engaged, one of those literal and figurative direct hits that lays the foundation for buildings like Capitol’s 5th Avenue headquarters. Despite only one more day in America, Nott said they loved it here and would return. The feeling proved mutual, this much was obvious. Nott and the audience were both right, the set closed with a quiet new number, the future lying inside for a moment before it moved out there to Houston Street and into the American commercial night. —Geoff Nelson
Tags: Avicii, Broods, Caleb Nott, Chvrches, Dido, Ella Yelich-O’Connor, Georgia Nott, James Blake, Joel Little, Lorde, Mecury Lounge, Moby, No Angel, Omogen Heap, Play, Portishead, Review
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Moby – Music Hall of Williamsburg – September 23, 2009
For a generation raised on a pop-culture diet of Leonardo DiCaprio movies, car commercials and MTV, Moby is a distinct character. From his sparse apartment highlighted on Cribs to his strange and inventive videos, he is an artist known as much for his quirks as he is for his music. During live shows, Moby’s personality and performance are inextricably intertwined. Last night at Music Hall of Williamsburg, he was loquacious, insecure and thoughtful. Before an energetic rendition of “Body Rock,” Moby delivered a caveat that it is “the dumbest, least-introspective song I have ever written.” He introduced the shameless enjoyment of “South Side” with a modest declaration that “it is my only song that would qualify as a hit.”
It seems Moby is his toughest critic. Throughout the set he made mildly self-deprecating remarks and sought out positive feedback from the crowd. He traded in his own “decent” version of “Raining Again” for the house remix produced by Swedish DJ Steve Angello. However, Moby’s greatest moments came when he indulged himself and played his “favorite songs.” With a dedication to the early-’90s Brooklyn rave scene, Moby enthusiastically danced to his progressive house track “Go.” His band included a violinist, drummer, bassist and opener Kelli Scarr on keys. Scarr and singer Inyang Bassey contributed on vocals, delivering some of the most moving and soulful songs of the night. So it was fitting that Moby began his encore by giving the stage to Scarr to sing a song about her son. While detractors, like Eminem, declare “nobody listens to techno,” Moby’s music and friendly ethos continue to resonate with a mass audience. —Jared Levy
Photos courtesy of Greg Notch | photography.notch.org/music