Datarock is a band that had me at “she’s not that kind of a girl, booger!” For anyone not familiar with this awesome Norwegian electro-funk duo, that’s a line from their hit song “Computer Camp Love” off their aptly titled 2005 album Datarock Datarock.
So when I heard that they’d be in Echo Park promoting their new single (out March 21st) I jumped at the chance to go. I arrived at the Echoplex on a chilly Friday night to be greeted by their incredibly lovely tour manager, Tony. Datarock wasn’t scheduled to go on until 11:30p due to their four opening acts but Tony warned me that even still they were running a little behind. Since I can’t possibly rock out on an empty liver I headed to the bar and in the process was nearly run over by a little man in a red tracksuit. In my sober haze I didn’t realize it was old time band member Fredrik Saroe, and instead thought to myself, “that boy should really re-think his outfit”. Vodka soda in hand I made my way to the front of the room. At nearly midnight the red tracksuit clad members filled the stage and burst into none other than “Computer Camp Love.” They followed this Revenge of the Nerds classic with “Sex Me Up,” another great track off their Datarock Datarock album. Frontman Kjetil Møster then broke into a very admirable running man, backed by his crew, and segued into “Princess.”
As fun as the show was, I was a little disappointed at the poor turnout. Kids were hanging by the bathrooms and couples were fawning over each other in the booths, but for such lively and danceable beats I expected to find a packed and sweaty dance floor. I then remembered when I first saw Matt & Kim about five years ago at what used to be one of my favorite L.A. haunts, Safari Sams. Standing before the then barely known duo in a sparsely filled room I recall thinking “they’re totally awesome! Why aren’t there more people here?” and “they should really re-think their name.” I may have been wrong about the name part, but I wasn’t (and never will be) wrong about the musical deliciousness aspect. I guess it just takes some people a little longer to catch on, so I’m telling you this: catch on now if you haven’t already. Datarock is rad.
They finished up their set with a few newer tracks that I wasn’t familiar with. Upon first listen one of them sounded a lot like “Once in a Lifetime” by the Talking Heads. Moments later they introduced a song only released last year “True Stories”, the ultimate Talking Heads tribute anthem. Clearly being very big fans of the New Wave, post-punk movement, you’d expect their new “extravagant” single to be some sort of mash-up between the Talking Heads and their Datarock Datarock album, right? Well, it is. Mix Datarock with “Psycho Killer” and you’ve got “Catcher in the Rye” – a classic beat with catchy lyrics and totally worth a listen. By the end of the night I found myself telling people that Datarock was from Norwegia. Now, for those of you who excel in music but not in geography: Norway is a place. Norwegia? Not so much. That’s when I knew it was time to put down my drink and head home. Another good night of epic tunes down, countless more to go.
Written by Lauren Lomma, Edited by Brandon Dorsky