Live Review: Data Romance — The Music Box, Hollywood
Wed, 14 Dec 2011 10:16:39
Electronic music has essentially taken over.
That's an undeniable fact. Deadmau5 headlined Lollapalooza. There's dubstep on car commercials. Britney Spears, Lady Gaga, Rihanna, and the rest of pop's elite are seeking out the hottest DJs and producers for tracks. Skrillex even collaborated with The Doors! However, among the bevy of young electronic talent, who will survive the genre's current appeal when the dust settles and some fresh rapper or pop star is dubbed the new messiah?
It's a curious quandary, and there isn't a simple answer. However, regardless of who else sticks around, Data Romance will be leading the pack. They don't fit into the bump-n-grind glow stick Rave scene. They're not a faceless, hipper-than-thou indie rock band. They're not a flavor-of-the-month pop act. In fact, the Canadian duo of Ajay Bhattacharyya and Amy Kirkpatrick is so much more than all of that. They construct haunting electronic soundscapes a la Nine Inch Nails, but they have a melodic sensibility akin to Portishead or Florence + the Machine. Yet, to simply compare them to any other act or combination of acts doesn't really do it. Data Romance are on par with all of those aforementioned artists, but they're their own beast, and they're ready to claw their way to the top.
Last night while supporting Digitalism at The Music Box, Data Romance gave the audience a dreamy and delightfully dark 45-minute set of songs from their EP and forthcoming material. Kirkpatrick resembled a futuristic film noir siren crooning chaotically over Bhattacharyya's skittering electronic drums and synths. They'd be the perfect house band for a bar in Blade Runner. Focused, futuristic, and fiery, their set was utterly transcendent. A swell of sounds enveloped a jagged hum as Kirkpatrick writhed and let out a rapturous refrain during "The Deep". A syncopated industrial dance spark lit up "Streetlight" as the singer flawlessly delivered an utterly and undeniably gorgeous hook. The warble hypnosis of "Bullets" belied just how elegantly gorgeous it was. There were moments of intensity—hearing Kirkpatrick moan "My Coffin Was Cold" or "Say goodbye, it's just a phase" proved chilling—and then poetically pop prowess once she let out some of those massive choruses.
If you haven't seen Data Romance, go now. You will fall in love with them. Besides, it's going to be a lot harder when they're headlining Coachella in the near future. Meet the most innovative, infectious, and inspiring 21st century outfit. Say hello to Data Romance.
Have you heard Data Romance?
See our premiere of their video for "Spark" here!