By David Courtright; photo by Michael Koenig (full gallery HERE)
Grimes is blowing up right now. The 23-year-old from Montreal by way of Vancouver (by way of the Mississippi River) is on the minds of every blogger and music critic worldwide, and her exuberant futuristic music is on repeat on college radio countrywide. It was no surprise that her merch table was barren – nothing but an apologetic friend saying, “Sorry, we’ve sold out of literally everything.” The disappointment was tactile.
Her set wasn’t bad. With such cerebral, technology-influenced music, it shouldn’t have been very surprising that she doesn’t really “do” much on stage but sing and push buttons. Not that her talent as a songwriter and producer are to be discounted. It’s just always a little more impressive when all those loops and vocal smears and crazy robot vocals are being made and manipulated live, not just played off a Macbook.
Despite all that, her set was good – short, but sweet. To a packed house, she played mostly songs off her recent release from 4AD, Visions. Grimes, a.k.a. Claire Boucher, is a multi-disciplinary artist, whose video and visual art work have gained notoriety, in conjunction with, if not because of, her musical talent. She was talkative with the rabid audience, mumbling adorable quips and anecdotes into one of her many mics. She also apologized at the end for not playing more songs, saying, “Sorry, I really don’t have anymore songs – I mean I have songs, just none that I can play live…”