Neon Indian Live @ Village Underground, London
For those who still have not heard, Neon Indian is a Brooklyn based indie-electronic whose 2009 debut, ‘Psychic Chasms’, was widely praised by critics. To locate them in the current music stratosphere, let’s say they are in line with the hip indie movement of the moments such as Com Truise, Purity Ring and so on. A few days ago I went to see them at East london venue Village Underground.
For this gig, Neon Indian performed alongside norwegian band Philco Fiction, and Johnny Jewel‘s project Chromatics, which I was really looking forward to…but managed to miss. It seems that I was not the one only eager to see them ( Chromatics are huge in London at the moment), and I think this may have affected the overall atmosphere as a section of the crowd were clearly there for the support. Still, the headliners obviously had several unconditional fans present.
Apart from the (very) rare breed of musicians that have that special power to turn any crowd of non-believers into a mass of followers, it is difficult for a band to perform in front of a disinterested ’you have to win me over‘ crowd. For my part, even though I try to think in terms of both musical performance and general atmosphere, I really believe that if the crowd is not there, then the performance is most likely to be affected negatively. I guess that’s the whole magic of live music.
Like most dreamy-chillwave-psychedelic music, Alan Palomo‘s sound isn’t always entirely accessible and given the flat atmosphere it felt at times like Palomo was struggling with his vocals, which sometimes turned the night into an extended instrumental psychedelic performance.
As a band Neon Indian definitely works well live with all the musicians constantly switched instruments on stage, and the songs expertly performed. I was particularly surprised by the performance of first single “Polish Girl” which radiated and grabbed everybody’s attention. In contrast one of my favourites, “Hex Girlfriend“, was a little flat.
I personally have a bipolar relationship with the latest album ‘Era Extrana‘, which, depending on the day, I either adore or despise. Likewise, tonight’s show suffered through some highs and lows. I can’t help but feel that a more collaborative crowd would have taken these songs to the next level.
Still, I would see Neon Indian again in a heartbeat… although next time I hope the rest of the audience actually appreciate it.
Post by Olivia
Neon Indian – Polish Girl