Monday, August 2, 2010

Depreciation Occurs at Great Scott

The Pill at Great Scott is consistently awarded Best Dance Night by the Boston Phoenix. I hadn’t checked it out but when I heard that The Depreciation Guild was stopping by to play a set on June 25, 2010, I figured it was as good a time as ever. Their latest release, Spirit Youth, has been in heavy rotation for me and features one of my favorite songs to come out this year, "My Chariot".  Its chiptunes-meets-shoegaze style is something very refreshing in 2010. However, a red flag should have come up when I found out a shoegaze band was playing a dance night.

The band played through many of their standout tracks from Spirit Youth but the space-out-while-staring-at-the-floor sound did not match the atmosphere of the crowd or night. Immediately, my enjoyment was hampered by the mixing at the venue. The band has a unique sound that is driven by their 8-bit electronics and dreamy, atmospheric vocals; none of which could really be heard in the mix. When you take these elements away, the band begins to sound generic. Still, they were able to retain attention with their more dynamic and recognizable songs such as “Spirit Youth” and “Dream About Me”. The trippy video for “Dream About Me” below as well as other live videos I have watched display what I was hoping to see yet this performance was oddly removed from such shows.

The Depreciation Guild was by no means terrible but it didn’t seem like it was the appropriate night for them to be there. Not many people looked like they were really paying attention to the music and most of them appeared to be waiting until the set ended so they could get their dance on. And yes, I did [try to] get my groove on after their set. It was a fun night but I would rather see the band under different circumstances perhaps at a different venue. I certainly wasn’t soured completely on the experience and hope they come around sometime soon.

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