By Cameron Cable
Fans of down-tempo dance music, psychedelic light shows and even fans of violins were in for a treat on an otherwise average Wednesday night.
On March 13, Emancipator performed at Arcata Theatre Lounge.
Emancipator is a music project by producer Douglas Appling and violinist Ilya Goldberg. Emancipator is best described as trip-hop, which is essentially down-tempo electronic music. The group is based in Portland, Ore.
Emancipator was supported by two other groups, Little People and Odesza.
Little People, is the pseudonym of Laurent Clerc who also produces trip-hop.
Odesza is a production duo consisting of Harrison Mills and Clayton Knight. Their music can be described as instrumental hip-hop combined with a deeper electronic music element and live instrumentation.
Tickets, at one time available in stores such as DTA and The Works, were sold out in most stores. Will Fink, who would have been a customer and therefore attending, lamented missing out.
“I was gonna buy a ticket, but everywhere I went they told me a gang of like 50 girls came in and bought them all,” Fink said.
Odesza put on a spirited opening performance that even managed to get a couple of people away from happy hour prices at the bar for a few minutes to dance. Their music was well constructed but was distinctly on the slower side, though it made for a pleasant atmosphere anyway.
Things picked up with Little People. The music was clean and well equalized for the venue. Even at the dance floor next to the speakers the noise level wasn’t high enough to be (immediately) deafening or painful. The tracks themselves were well produced and structured.
The real experience, however was Emancipator. The dual producer and violinist combo made for a very dynamic stage performance. The violinist had a very strong dramatically calm presence on stage.
As Emancipator beg a spectacular light show used 3D projectors which brilliantly illuminated large triangular shapes behind the musicians. Emancipator’s music was the most danceable and
upbeat music of the evening, and the audience responded to it.
“Since when were we back in the ’60s?” said Ethan Moon, a concert attendee commenting on the hippie-esque dancing taking place on the dance floor.
“It’s like a weird drug tank in there,” said Jason Stewart.