Indie-Rock and Eastside Exhaustion Leads To Nasa Intergalactic Circus

I’ve had a healthy serving of indie-rock since Monday with a Robotanists gig at Hunnypot Unlimited on Monday and being over on the eastside the last two nights to hit up the echo/spaceland circuit.

Monday I made it out to The Growlers for my first time. Quite honestly, I was angling more to see Tijuana Panthers, but apparently someone in the band had to work a late shift and they played earlier in the night. I was disappointed, but happy to learn The Seasons were filling their time slot. (FYI – Tijuana Panthers are playing Pehrspace next weekend).
I’ve seen The Seasons before, but not an intimate venue like echo. I had most recently seen them at Bloomfest and they quickly reminded me that their collective groove sounds better indoors. Unfortunately, I only caught a few tracks before they stepped off stage – but I enjoyed the performance and the crowd seemed to be pleased with it. I caught the first few Growlers songs before making my way to Spaceland for Local Natives.
I didn’t stay too long (I didn’t stay at all really) at Local Natives because I’ve seen them before and I’m looking for them to change it up. Maybe I am too critical – but, I’d like to see them step outside of their box some more than they have been. For all I know, they were switching it up and I just left to quickly. I will have to check back in with them next week.
Tuesday brought me back to Spaceland for a hastily put together bill of indie-rock music of various sub genres. Odd Modern opened the night and they were dope! A duo featuring a male on drums and a female vocalist who plays synth and effects processors. You could feel influence from the recent wave of indie-electro-hip-hop – and this group may be on to something. At the very least, the performance is entertaining. The drummer pre-programs lights (using a MIDI interface) so that the lights play along with his drumming. At one point he had a red strobe going on his snare as he was beating it to shit. It looked pretty cool.
The acts that followed were nothing to overwhelming until Tic Tic Boom! took the stage. The crowd seemed to be there to see them and they were excited for their first performance with a new drummer. The quartet reeled off a few new cuts, definitely of the indie-power-pop variety, and played most of their first EP. The highlight of their set was definitely the dance inspiring “Stop Let Me Off” which had the late night Tuesday crowd toe-tapping, jumping and cheering for more.
With so much indie music under my belt for the early part of the week, I decided to stay away from the eastside on Wednesday and hit up NASA at the El Rey. You know the night was going to be special when NASA came out with a completely LA-ified intro, complete with video footage of downtown, compton, low-riders and LA based music (i.e. California Love, anything Dr. Dre). Unlike prior performances, where they did a lot of cuts from their album and had some rappers parade through both on screen and on stage – this performance was more like a DJ entertainment extravaganza. They played amazing videos on two screens that they were mixing in real time with the music…and the footage seemed to synch perfectly. It was cool, lots of old school stock stuff, and it was a great addition to the DJ set. As far as the crowd goes, at the front of the dance floor it was hot, heavy and energized, although there was plenty of room to stand and be a casual observer from the back. All in all, the DJ duo went through a wide range of music, dosing the crowd with NASA originals here and there, a Fatlip freestyle appearance and ending with their banger “Gifted” which featured Kanye West doing vocals on video.
I was happy I took the night off from the indie scene – cause you just don’t see performances like NASA’s all that often. To be blunt, it exceeded my expectations.
So far the week has been a good one in music – let’s see what the weekend brings….

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