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Monday, June 8, 2009

Live show review: The Present



New York’s experimental group, The Present, gave a very weird but very entertaining performance at The Farm this weekend (Saturday night). Producer Rusty Santos is joined by his two friends Jesse Lee (drums/vocals) and Mina (keyboards/vocals) to form this eclectic and dangerously edgy trio. If Santos’ name sounds familiar it’s because he has had his hand in producing some great music over the past five years (Animal Collective’sSung Tongs, Panda Bear’s Person Pitch, Born Ruffians’ Red, Yellow & Blue). I got the Animal Collective vibe from the group almost immediately with their ethereal but in your face sound that you can’t help but tap your foot along to. The ambient noise experiments were controlled with the pounding (and I mean pounding) beat of Lee’s drums and accented very well by the chime of Mina’s keyboards. The group has got the whole experimental thing down pat and, though I usually like a little more control to my music, The Present kept me very entertained throughout the entire set (I actually was a little disappointed when they ended after only about 45 minutes of playing). All four band members were incredibly into their music, Mina actually banging on her keyboard so hard it fell down at one point in the show, which got and kept the audience going. I was impressed with how hallucinatory and chimerical the music seemed while being incredibly controlled and focused at the same time. The term ‘noise’ never entered my mind (like it sometimes tends to with a few experimental groups), and The Present’s unique sound drew not only a large group at the farm, but a few interested heads popping over the fence from Little Kings to check it out. The show was great, and if you’re into the experimental kind of thing, I would definitely keep an eye out for these guys.


-Laurie Moot

Currently listening to: "Girl of the North Country," by Sam Bush

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