Wow, this was an odd weekend. On Saturday going to the traditional summer party at Café Kabale for some food, music and friends, I ran into two bands playing gigs there. Then I figured I better go and see them again the next day at the gig they planned to play in Göttingen.
Now, I do have problems with electronic music. It may be clever, it may be loud and it may pull all the smart tricks you need to make people move. But I usually don’t find it suitable for live performance. With everything being electronic, it seems a bit superfluous to have people to press the play button and perhaps jump around wildly while the hard work is done by some little box full of electronics. There needs to be a bit more for things to be worthwhile. Luckily these bands could provide that, by adding in some live singing and playing as well as their sheer presence.
Les Trucs came with a huge fold-out table full of cables, keyboards an nifty gadgets to play the right percussion sounds at the right times or when some button is pressed. They also brought along somewhat remarkable
devices to enable them wearing microphones right before their mouths without needing to hold them - one of them attached to a hat, the other being a more complicated construction looking like a boxy school-rucksack with some desk lamp parts being used to get the microphone in the right position; Extra metal bars were attached to provide a way to carry a small keyboard along. Rather decisive live playing and singing made this analogue enough to be cool. A cheerful
Wal, Gorilla, Elefant to that!
Gtuk was a bit further on the weird side. At least that’s what you may find yourself thinking when you’re watching a young guy dressed mainly in underpants and dragon or frog style cape (I couldn’t quite figure that out, my colleague’s baby daughter has a jacket with similar ears on its hood and it’s quite cute on her…) crawl around the ground and shout into a children’s toy microphone or sit down at a miniature drum set and beat the shit out of it.
Musically this sounded a bit more electronic and automatic (with a hat tip to Alec Empire, perhaps) to me - except for the ‘singing’ which invariably sounded like indiscernible screaming, thanks to the odd toy device use as a microphone I presume, making the whole thing seem more like a performance than a concert at times (admittedly there seem to be a few comprehensible lyrics in the tracks available at last.fm), with Gtuk’s dancing and physical presence taking centre stage.