The vernal equinox brought some rain and warm weather to Chicago, but it also brought the indie kids out to hear some watered down electronic music.
Norwegian group 120 Days opened the double bill with their spacey, Kraftwerk-inspired music drawing mainly from last year's self-titled debut. The sold out crowd consisted of 90% of Kids not even legal to drink yet. The four youngsters took the stage with a very drunk lead singer, Adne Meisfjord, swaying throughout most of the show. He sang and played keys coherently, but there were definitely moments where it looked like he was going to plummet off stage. Dahl kept yelping at the audience as some fans yelped back. They started with "Keep Smiling" containing echoing vocal effects and propulsive synths. The audience appeared bored standing with their arms crossed, barely moving. Later, someone remarked how no one was quite into the performance as the band was. The heat in the venue was stifling causing the guitarist's long locks to become drenched in sweat. "Sleepwalking" made the kids perk up a little more followed by a brand new song never before played live until that moment. The epic "Come Out ,Come Down, Fade Out, Be Gone" ended the set on a high note. An even higher note occurred when Meisfjord decided to not only take his shirt off to reveal his 18 year old physique but then proceeded to spew beer into the audience. Nothing like some backwash to complete a set. Norwegians sure know how to have fun.
The changeover between bands took forever and finally the well-behaved Ratatat took the stage. The trio from NY has acquired a much bigger following with their second album, last year's Classics. Their self-titled debut in 2004 defined a mainly instrumental sound with heavy guitars, drum machines, and synths bordering on dance music. Sometimes it transforms into metal-electronic music. The band projected cool images onto a screen behind them containing repetitive flashes of light and splattering images. The band's silhouettes eclipsed the images creating a bigger effect. The kids ate the visuals and music up reacting by moshing and raucously throwing their fists in the air--quite a contrast from 120 Days. Most of Ratatat songs sound the same but the easiest to recognize was "Wildcat" from their latest record, one of the highlights from the show. "Lex" was a solid number as well. All in all, the evening was so-so, but maybe that's my non-teenager mentality talking.