October 20, 2008

Bmore Round Robin Recap

Future Islands feat. Vic from Beach House (below), Mortal Kombat monologues, Adventure(s) with Mark Brown's lid-popping animation, Double Dagger feat. Blue Leader/Ed Schrader, Nuclear Power Pants in green shark skulls, Wham City theatrics and plenty of raw, unfiltered BO - it was like Whartscape with AC, bouncers and $7 Stellas.

Probably the best act I hadn't seen before was Denny from Smart Growth, who has transformed his sets lately from drumming over Phil Collins needle drops to rocking the crowd Girl Talk style; no mike, just a Mac and dirty South choruses extruded through Capcom rainbows.

Smart Growth - Extreme Ballin'

Props to Dan Deacon and everyone supporting this tour - while there must be many challenges to coordinating 16+ dates with 20+ artists and sleeping on different floors for almost three weeks, you'd never know. This weekend (which sold out and spawned additional late shows each night) ran flawlessly, with a new artist and their A/V accompaniment kicking in seconds after the previous song finished on another stage.

Hopefully this becomes an annual tour and Baltimore is actually be on the schedule next time (failing that, maybe a local remake of Footloose?), and hopefully other artists can take a lesson on ego-free citywide collaboration.

Adventure - Wild Wild Ride

Read a much better review of the weekend from The Village Voice, or below you can experience an approximation of every performance condensed into four minutes courtesy of Showbeast:

Pics: Lesser Gonzalez Alvarez via Elisa Brown, Future Islands feat. Vic from Beach House via Zach Wiegand, Nuclear Power Pants via pixelateit


Anonymous said...

This show looked fucking great, I just don't get why the Baltimore Round Robin tour never happens in Baltimore?

Anonymous said...

hold yer horses

Anonymous said...

Hopefully Smart Growth schedules a show soon, I'd like to check out his new schtick.

Z said...

Dan D said today they're trying to schedule a Bmore show in December, so stay tuned.

Alex Mudge said...

Baltimore has Whartscape, and the benefits (?) of Wham City being based here. How many times have I seen Double Dagger (one of strongest non-Wham acts) alone in the past six months?

I think the Wham camp should be careful about diluting the city with festivals/elaborate shows.

Plus, playing Baltimore is preaching to the choir for those guys.

This tour was, at it's core, a missionary venture, attempting to win over converts to the Church of Wham. How many other tours actually end up with more people than they began with?

The proselytizing image isn't a reach given the near religious/spiritual experience people describe having had during this tour.

And Baltimore is so alive with great music outside of Wham...

What's there to bitch about?

Anonymous said...

Shut yer face...I'd go see Double Dagger every week if I could. But, you're right, I've talked with a few of the Round Robin bands about no Baltimore stop and "dilution" seems to be the key word. But you can bet your bottom Wham City dollar that if there were a Baltimore stop, it'd be a sell out.

Alex Mudge said...


"Sell out" also seems to be a phrase on the lips of some of more forward-thinking of those types, and how to avoid that fate.


I think Wham's greatest artistry comes in their organizational skills in the face of seeming mayhem. And those skills are being stressed about as much as the Annex support beams during it's inaugural show. However, no one ever expresses this outright; they only intimate it.

A lot of the recent press of the tour, and more specifically Wham City, itself, seems to naively paint the collective as this "never-never land" of ego-less neo-hippies. Actually, structurally, they are much more like a medieval guild--very hierarchical, and with a bizarre pseudo mysticism (2012?)

It'd be really cool to do a social science/ economic/ group psychology/ cultural study of the group.

When it comes to this gang, it's really easy to post on the surface, because this is a definite image they want to get across. However, it's the actual innards that are far more, in a way disturbing, but so much more interesting.

Z said...

All of them give Dan credit for pulling everyone together, but the best quality this tour displayed was inclusiveness. All bands/genres playing side by side regardless of their popularity, everyone lugging gear and working the merch tables, $8 tickets, etc.

It wasn't even about Wham City anymore, it was about a taste of Bmore, which is great considering most of Wham City isn't even from here.