Shout Out Out Out Out
Le Poisson Rouge
Tuesday, November 2
Better Than: Again, watching the election results. (Sorry, but it’s true.)
It’s taking everything in me not to make a joke about the gratuitous use of Outs in Shout Out Out Out Out’s name. The Edmonton crew headlined a sparsely populated LPR last night alongside dance cohorts Free Blood; the 40-something people that did make it out made up for it by being the band’s biggest fans, and from the distinct accents at the bar, we suspect the vast majority were Canadian themselves. (Unlike us, they didn’t have an election to be fretting about.)
The band’s live success lies in their excess. The six members were dwarfed by two drum kits, keyboards that act as complimentary basses, a wall of amps, and more gadgets than we could possibly tell apart: all necessary equipment for their heavily layered dance-rock. There’s no gradual build here. The group jumps right into songs with driving snares, bloated and bouncy bass kicks, and heavily Vocoded hooks that are impossible to understand live — the choruses of more popular tracks like “Bad Choices” and “In the End It’s Your Friends” got lost in the spacey sound effects and Nik 7’s warped-alien vocals. Though that was partially thanks to the scream-y guy next to us, who was eager to shout out (out out out) victorious agreement to the latter. (The onstage line “In the end it’s your friends that will fuck you over!” solicited the offstage ad lib “Fuck yeah, they will!”)
For the most part, onstage banter was kept at a minimum, probably because the band’s onstage antics were entertainment enough — every interlude featuring jogging, spinning drumsticks, and more high-kicks than we thought possible for men in such tight pants. The audience caught on: By now everyone had congregated right in front of the stage, and no one was too cool to dance. A girl in pigtails skanked front and center, while a man in a button-down and tie had switched into sneakers to do the same; another satisfied customer in a peacoat with a popped collar hopped along next to the odd couple. “We’ve only played this once before,” warned Nik 7 during a moment of silence, at the onset of a newly assembled track “Wayward Satellite.” “Don’t fuck us up!” Fortunately, it went on without incident, unfolding into a rumbling, bass-heavy dance jam that invoked flashes of dark, brooding, ’80s-inspired house. The tempos never varied much, but this is the kind of robot rock that you’re supposed to just zone out and have fun with. And in the end, the handful of people who’d stuck it out did just that.
Critical Bias: Smalltown DJs toured with this band a few years ago — when they those guys tell me to listen to something, I do.
Overheard: “This is my dream lineup from, like, 2006.”
Random Notebook Dump: The Voice swag table outside had free earplugs and recyclable beer cozies.