Bless the Knife. Damn the Aragon.
The wonderfully bold Swedish duo took to the cavernous Uptown ballroom last night, bringing the eerie-pretty art-dance of its Shaking the Habitual, one of my favorite LPs of 2013. As you can see above, the band's busy stage show mixes equal parts 1980s sportswear, Gozer the Gozerian, UFO cults, Sparkle Motion, Judith Butler's vision of Jem and the Holograms, Michael Stipe's face makeup, Aussie acid-EDM act Empire of the Sun and Ingmar Bergman's Sweatin' to the Oldies. It's crazy, eye-microwaving, glorious.
Karin Dreijer Andersson liberally shared mic duties, layering vocals over the disco-mirrored drums and synths. As much it seems like the perfect medicine for a dull festival afternoon, the show belongs in the dark, where lasers and shadows can appropriate contrast, as do the odd pop hooks and underlying unease in the skewed dance tunes.
Too bad it had to be held in the echoing din of the Aragon.