Sunday, October 4, 2009
Fever Ray at Webster Hall
With all the players of the group masked, enrobed in black cloaks, shrouded in darkness with pulsating antique lamps reflecting the rhythm of the music, Fever Ray is somber, other worldly, and pleasantly strange. Sporadic laser beams gave off an eerie green light that cut through the blackness, which only created more of a strange dark chaos rather than providing light. The sound made your sternum shake, your eyes water, and your breath slow down into a thick molasses. I noticed that most of the crowd fell into sort of a hypnotic trance. Normally I wouldn't condone such "zombified" behavior but, it seemed far too fitting to the environment of the show to argue it. This music's maker and her sound will leave your breath taken, and your soul haunted.
Performance Art and Concerts are becoming more cohesive. The craft of Performance Art has been interlocked with Music for years and years now... but it usually seems haphazardly slapped together or too gimmicky, PLUS it costs you too much money. What Fever Ray did to its audience was cryptic, futuristic, intriguing, and affordable. Karin Dreijer Andersson and her songs are a modern mystery of the music industry, an enigma that transcends gender, perhaps even humanity.
My camera does LITTLE justice to what I witnessed and what I witnessed does the show even LESS justice then what people up front must have seen. However, what I missed in vision, I made up for in experience. Having climbed 10 Feet onto the massive speakers to the left of the stage in Webster Hall, we had a strange elevated and unmolested view of the theater and its inhabitants. I felt as if we were stowaways to some high holy Nordic ceremony, where we could be potentially skinned alive and served as a sacrifice to the Gods if we were caught watching. Luckily, we were never discovered, and we were fortunate enough to have heard and witnessed the rants of the high priestess and her minions- shrunken heads, dervishes, laser beams, devil sticks, and all.
As mysteriously as Fever Ray has appeared, they shall cease to exist after this tour. All I can say to this is I am glad I went. If they cease to create music we will be robbed of something truly interesting. On the upside- maybe the Knife or something just as equally progressive from Karin will emerge and tour soon.
The Set List:
If I Had a Heart
I'm Not Done
Now's the Only Time I Know
Keep The Streets Empty
Dry and Dusty
Stranger Than Kindness (Nick Cave Cover)
When I Grow Up
Here Before (Vashti Bunyan Cover)