DJ Spooky @ Uber (23/03/06)
Mon 27th Mar, 2006 Event Reviews 855 viewsin
Take one international touring DJ slash producer. Insert pre-made sound collage set. Add a Mac playing pre-made looping visuals. Allow DJ to not only turn his back on the body of work the entire venue has come to see him play, but encourage him to play a clichéd variety of 80s and 90s music. In fact, demand he doesn’t actually mix any of it, instead using effects and out of time scratching to mask the transitions with a wall of poorly tuned sound and an oddly arrogant demeanour that seem incapable of noticing the crowd rather dispiritedly thinning.
DJ Spooky. That subliminal kid. Apparently.
A positive review would take 50 words. It would describe the lovely surrounds of Uber, the amiable staff and it might say a few things about the support act Different Strokes being eclectic fun DJs or perhaps make some polite reference to Simulcast VJing. It wouldn’t mention Spooky. It certainly wouldn’t scrutinise his visuals or his mixing technique or his musical content or the relevance of his performance to his body of work that he is most known for. It definitely wouldn’t draw tangents to the disparity of even his recent street press interviews and his actual performance. It might mention his shirt. He had a pretty shirt on. It was white and black, with stripes in a horizontal pattern that from memory appeared to be about 8 to 10cms high per stripe. It was long sleeve with a rounded neck and was relatively tight fitting. It might have been pure cotton, but one would assume a cotton and polyester blend. The seams appeared to be sown with great care and for all intents and purposes it was a fine specimen of attire.
This however, is not a positive review. This is not even going to offer the usual vague references and throw away pleasantries that would occupy the word count of a review struggling to perform its duty in a modest manner for sake of keeping the peace. This is a big ‘WTF’ on behalf of the 10 or 20 eager fans who left before the half an hour waypoint of intolerable sound abuse, and on behalf of those who stayed and muttered in the corners. Somehow the nonsense did get a crowd dancing, which is rather startling a revelation to behold, and possibly more so given half of them actually looked like they paid to attend. Then again, even a 16 year old DJ (or ‘Subliminal kids’ for that matter) know that any crowd will contain someone who will dance to House Of Pain’s tired anthem ‘Jump around’. They have pubs in the city to prove this theory. Of course you don’t pay to enter those pubs, but at the same time you don’t have any assurance that the DJ will be wearing such a nice shirt now do you? In fact, and brace yourself here, sometimes the DJ is not playing at all. Sometimes it’s just a computer playing!
As such is also DJ Spooky, the subliminal laptop owner, bound now helplessly by his woeful performances in the spider-web thread of poor reviews the country over. All the careful preparations, research and recursive travels down the pathways of Spooky’s production career proved to be a monumental waste of time given the lacklustre performance of a Commonwealth Games equivalent of a shot-put ball in the face. Perhaps a javelin in the ear would be more appropriate given the musical performance hinted at above. By all reports, those who weathered the Spooky storm were salvaged by Rude Bwoyz who, much like Different Strokes and Simulcast earlier in the evening, gave the crowd something so much closer to what they actually wanted to hear then Spooky himself, that the distance between became nigh on infinite. That’s deep. That’s… subliminal.
Footnote: Due to popular demand, the Black and White Shirt is rumoured to be going solo and will be making a run of tours for fans on the east coast in late April. Stay tuned to ITM for more information.