Last Friday night Eclectic hosted three bands, local boys Flora and Fauna and Duchampion as well as Philadelphia’s psych-folk golden boy, Kurt Vile. I hear rumors that a bunch of you guys couldn’t get in, so here’s what you missed:
First in the lineup was Wesleyan’s own Duchampion, sadly playing to an almost empty room. I must admit that they were the reason I agreed to cover this show in the first place, having seen them at Usdan S’more Night the previous week. I was dying to know if the band was actually as good as I had thought they were or if it was just the awesome power of s’mores (entirely possible). Luckily, as I came to find out, their excellence was not just s’more induced. It was weird-ish; if you took an Arcade Fire loving werewolf, gave him acid, and told him to play a Fleet Foxes song it might sound something like what was going down at Eclectic around ten-thirty on Friday (all twelve of us can attest to it). All the songs were good, but the one with the yipping was the best. Admirable job, gents. You should have had a bigger crowd.
The next group was Flora & Fauna, who are louder and drive harder than Duchampion. By this time a few more people had trickled in, increasing the energy level in the room and making it more conducive to the appreciation of live music. At first I was unsure how to feel about them, thinking at first that this might be the caliber of band that was really fantastic to hear when drunk and not so much at other times. At times the singing was off-key and the rhythms forgettable. It wasn’t so much that the show wasn’t enjoyable, just enough so that it took me a bit to make up my mind about them. However, they steadily increased my opinion of their magnificence with each song they played. By the last song, I was quite convinced. I would listen to you guys sober (or drunk). Also: good for dancing.
Last up was the much-anticipated Kurt Vile, and while the other bands were good, this was FUCKING AWESOME: it was a dark, dirty, and twisted sound that permeated the room in a mellow sort of way when the band began to play. Vile’s throaty drone blended well with the minor-key yet energetic bleakness, and the half of the crowd that was standing up danced as if the apocalypse were tomorrow. Personally, I remember digging the general air of grungy trippy-ness, created through a combination of complicated looking electronics and unusual instrumentation, and also being really, really sad when it ended. Kurt Vile, come back to me.