Simian Mobile Disco Unit LIVE review and pictures by Troy Brookins

Music Reviews
Simian Mobile Disco Unit LIVE review and pictures by Troy Brookins
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Sep 10, 2009, 05:38

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SIMIAN MOBILE DISCO UNIT / THE FIERY FURNACES / DARK MEAT / THE NETHERLANDS / FINGER ON THE PULSE at East River Park, Brooklyn, NY; August 9, 2009

With the threat of rain and an afternoon of insane humidity, JellyNYC threw another Pool Party with one of the more interesting line-ups of the summer. Heavy on the DJ tip with NYC DJ duo Finger on the Pulse keeping things interesting and energetic between acts, mixing house and soul, and Simian Mobile Disco Unit headlining—this was more of a dance party than a pool party.

Local Brooklyn band The Netherlands opened the show with their blend of seventies glam rock meets Rush meets Kiss. A definite must for fans of Jaguar Love.

Next up was Athens, Georgia's Dark Meat, which featured no less than twelve members on stage at any given time. Led by singer/guitarist Jim McHugh, Dark Meat embodied the spirit of the MC5 coupled with free jazz and a good dose of Southern twang in Hugh's delivery. What sounds like the recipe for a complete disaster was actually entertaining—in a good way. Toward the end of the set, a couple of band members leaped off the stage and grabbed homemade streamer dispensers that were passed off to the audience who took the colorful strands into the crowd as far as they would go. If that wasn't enough audience participation, a couple of kids were handed a tuba and drum to add to the free jam that closed the set. This was the perfect distraction to try and forget the heat.

NYC's own brother/sister duo, The Fiery Furnaces featuring Jason Loewenstein on bass took to the stage in support of I'm Going Away—their latest release that has been tagged most accessible by those who have followed the duo's rather interesting career which had seemed to have lost critical momentum, until now, after their first two releases. Starting off with “Chris Michaels” from fan favorite Blueberry Boat, the band drew predominately from I'm Going Away but not without including “Leaky Tunnel” from their debut. While I miss Eleanor Friederger's guitar playing, I'm sure it's near impossible to remember all those words that her brother crams into her mouth and play guitar at the same time, it's nice to see Matt Friedberger concentrate on one instrument without seeming like he's doing a million things at once. If you counted these guys out because of their last few releases, it's time to revisit why you loved The Fiery Furnaces in the first place.

Finger on the Pulse kept the beat going while waiting for Simian Mobile Disco Unit to set up, and the heat and humidity continued to be relentless without any promise of relief so I took this to be my cue to head home for a cold shower. After all, no one needed to see this white boy dance.

-Troy Brookins

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