by Josh Gross
Lasers. Everything needs them. Bands, donut shops, bike helmets, you name it. This is what I'm convinced of after the Nov. 2 Talkdemonic show at Visual Arts Collective.
Despite the array of video projections on the screen during opening sets by Boise's Le Fleur and the Oakland, Calif.-based Mwahaha, things felt a bit slow. Le Fleur showed off some newer tunes and Mwahaha made no shortage of crazy analog synth noise, but something just didn't feel right.
But when Talkdemonic hit the stage, it brought the lasers. And that made all the difference.
The Portland, Ore.-based viola and drums duo have always created intriguing music by layering effected strings and synth sequences over hip-hop beats. But richly layered as it is, the band's stage presence had always felt a little lacking when I have seen them perform. There's only so much strutting and windmilling that can be emoted into viola playing motions, and inventive as his beats may be, Kevin O'Connor ain't the type to play drums upside down a la Motley Crue.
But backed by glittering lasers shooting dramatic stabs of backlighting in front of the video projections, it was positively epic, with enough psychedelic wallop to soothe even the most savage Hessian.
That is how it's done.
So, Boise, forget about putting a bird on it like Portland does. Wrap that shit up in lasers instead. Even if it's a sandwich. Especially if it's a sandwich.