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Sunday, April 17, 2011

Quick review: Bassnectar at Stage AE, April 15

Posted By on Sun, Apr 17, 2011 at 6:26 PM

Apparently, Bassnectar is anti-glowstick, which is a little bit anti-rave-cliché, and that worked, because this show felt very much more like a concert than a rave. It could be argued that it was a cross between the two, as elements of electro leaked over into elements of rock 'n' roll. But even the way his set was structured made it feel like a rock concert, as there were almost distinct breaks between "songs," not a feeling one gets when seeing a DJ mix live. He moved from one hip-hop infused metalhead remix to another and the visuals looping on the massive screens that surrounded his mixing table went from orange lasers and magic eye tricks to black and white video montage of burlesque dancers from the 20's and strange footage of Native Americans on grainy film.

Notable samples included a Depeche Mode track that was accompanied by visuals of pink cartoon elephants reminiscent of Heffalumps and Woozles. He also dropped Helmet's "In the Meantime," or rather, the raunchy guitar riff that makes that song awesome, and looped it into some hip-hop per his normal remix recipe. He played "Bass Head" and the crowd went dutifully wild, and for the send off he sampled a Gorillaz song, because every rock show has an encore.

It was a trifecta of metal, hip-hop and electro; there were brief moments where he pushes the audience somewhere outside of his brostep norms but then brings them right back with a Lil' Wayne sample. Bassnectar live appealed to those who love accessible metal and grimy hip-hop and have an insatiable need for monstrous bass.

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