The huge popularity of EDM — electronic dance music — has led to a sea change in concerts lately, as huge crowds gather to watch brand-name DJs like Skrillex, Deadmau5 and Avicii. Nothing wrong with that, but it was great to be reminded last night at Celebrate Brooklyn that there are still bands playing dance music the old school way: with multiple human beings and instruments being played in real time.
Hot Chip transitions seamlessly between songs, as they did heading from "One Life Stand" into "Night And Day," which, even divorced from its recent video (which is totally bananas), is still a trippy, catchy piece of dance-pop. The band still does DJ shows, but they haven't given up on music as a performance art: Their live show is precise and polished. And again, there were plenty of echoes of earlier musical influences — fans of early Depeche Mode and New Order would have been very happy with the show last night. And fans of Fleetwood Mac who were on the ball might've noticed that band's "Everywhere" used as a kind of transition out of Hot Chip's own "Ready For The Floor," one of a handful of older songs they played. (Most of the rest of the set came from the new album In Our Heads.)
Everything (including our broadcast) had been delayed by a summer storm that brought heavy rain, nickel-sized hailstones, and a dangerously impressive lightning display to the New York area. But Hot Chip made no concessions to the weather or the outdoor venue, accompanying their live music with a full-on, fairly intense light show.
The set was dancey but melodic, from a band that has always known how to have fun. And the sold-out audience (almost 8,000) had fun too. A walk around the back of the crowd turned up lots of people dancing their butts off. It may not have been a DJ set or a rave, but all the accoutrements of a major dance music event were there. And at the end of the set, Hot Chip invited the audience to join them for an actual DJ set at Santos Party House in lower Manhattan. For anyone with the time and the ability to squeeze in, the fun promised to last a lot longer.
The band will play NYC's Terminal 5 on Friday, July 20. Tickets are still available.
- "Boy From School"
- "Don't Deny Your Heart"
- "One Life Stand"
- "Night And Day"
- "Over And Over"
- "Hand Me Down Your Love"
- "Look At Where We Are"
- "How Do You Do?"*
- "I Feel Better"
- "Ready For The Floor"*
- "Everywhere" (Fleetwood Mac cover)
- "Hold On"
- "Let Me Be Him"
*included in video presentation
Produced by Saidah Blount and Amy Schriefer; Audio engineered by Josh Rogosin; Video produced by Brooklyn Independent Television; Video edited by Mito Habe-Evans; Hosted by John Schaefer, WNYC; Special thanks to Celebrate Brooklyn and Bowery Presents