I was at Governor’s Ball this weekend. I don’t enjoy music in large crowds. Seeing Polica and Reputante at The Southgate House Revival couldn’t have been a better palate cleanser. The sanctuary is small and quirky. Since it was a school night, and Monday at that, the front of the stage was approachable.
I had no experience with Reputante going into their show. Their stage presence was disaffected and sarcastic. I can’t tell if they were just genuinely over their tour and/or that location and crowd, or that’s part of their schtick. That attitude leaves me a little put out. Regardless, I enjoyed their sound, and will do some listening in the future. It seems like all the new bands that I hear coming out of New York all sound like 80’s throwbacks, not that I have any problem with that. I’m happy to hear melody and synths back in music.
One other thing of note is that they have a lady drummer playing to a click track. I always love lady drummers. It seems to me that playing to a click track is Olympic level drumming. There’s no wiggle room there; you’re either dead on the electronic effects or a total mess. So cheers to lady drummer and her Olympic level drumming.
I have listened to Polica a bit. I knew virtually nothing about them, but with tickets at 15 bucks, there wasn’t much to lose. The band consists of a producer, a bassist, two drummers, and a singer and mixer. I was suspect of the dueling drummer stage set-up.
But it was spectacular. The drummers worked off each other, and were perfectly in sync. They brought more drama to the intense parts of their songs. I thought that much noise would drown out the vocalist. I know you can’t turn waif-y into an adverb, but I’m doing it. If singing can sound waif-y, it was so. The fact that the vocalist and the drummers were balanced was probably due to the great sound guy at The Soughtgate House Revival, and the band’s careful set-up. For all the electronics that they had on the stage, everything felt really well balances on my side of the stage.
This show was so close. It was a really great experience. It was exactly the antidote that I needed to resolve my festival experience. Long live thriving local music in my mid-sized city.