March 15th, 2011

Loopster Live: The Night Toro y Moi Canceled

My friend works as a chef at a fancy restaurant in town. His nights off are few, far and fairly random. Planning to hang out is usually difficult. Sometimes a cause pops up that is important enough to change up his schedule. A free show at Fitzgerald’s by Toro y Moi was one that warranted a worknight switcheroo.

Unfortunately, as we walked in the door of Fitz flashing proof of 21+ we heard, “Toro y Moi is upstairs, right?” to which the doorman responded, “he canceled.”

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First of all, it’s “they canceled.” Secondly, how about a little advance notice? That’s all I’m asking for. That’s what your blog is for, Mr. Toro and Mr. Moi (twitter isn’t going to cut it for me). On the heels of a music festival where the crowds didn’t show, I’m poised for an evening of an absent headliner. Karma foils me again.

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The thought of walking out the door and rekindling a romance with Anvil breezes through our minds. But, you know what, we’re here, there’s beer, we better get used to it. We walked into the downstairs half of Fitz and the weird sounds of Amen Dunes. Having not dropped enough acid to understand the noise, we grabbed ice cold cans from the bar and found refuge outside, waiting on the next act.

Reading Rainbow took the stage. “They’re the only band on the line-up that I’ve heard of,” says my friend. The Philly duo takes a minimalist approach to rock and roll. With drums straight from the screens of Rock Band players everywhere and loud guitars, they kept urging the crowd to “come closer and dance.” Some obliged. I headed for the stairs.

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Pterodactyl saved the night for me. They got the ball rolling with a locomotive of sound. For their set I didn’t have to sit around and contemplate their eccentricity or dissect their motives. They just filled up the upstairs with their music and didn’t release the crowd until they were through with them.

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Pterodactyl (which I just realized is spelled “Ptreodactyl” on every Houston website including Fitzgerald’s and our own…) is one of the bands that I would have a tough time sitting down and listening to for a daily soundtrack, but live they were amazing. Just ask my neighbor. Halfway through the show I spotted him in the crowd fist raised in defiance at the ceiling slamming his head into air around him.

Even with that high entertainment, some people sifted out before the end of the set. Prince Rama was proving to be quite a draw. There was something hypnotic about the Brooklyn band. As I walked downstairs to order another beer, the people at Fitzgerald’s were all pulled in close to the downstairs stage. The smokers abandoned their cigarettes and joined the masses watching them gyrate around on the stage laden in glitter and shiny newness. I made a note to myself: Start band, create eccentric novelty.

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Parts & Labor was the last band to take the stage upstairs. Picking up right where Pterodactyl left off, they blasted through their set. Honestly, each one felt too short. With seven bands sharing two stages, your bound to run into that kind of problem.

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With the subcontinent schtick of Prince Rama going on downstairs, the Parts & Labor provided the perfect end to my night. All sound. Heavy distortion. An all-consuming neckbeard. You can’t ask for more when you want indie music. Well, you could have asked for Toro y Moi to show up to their gig, but that would have been asking too much on Monday night. Luckily, Cloud Nothings picked up the slack as best they could. They played the last set, but by that time my eardrums were swollen and I had nothing left to give.

[Check out the rest of the photos from the show on our Flickr account.]

— Paul

Comments

Jeff K — Wednesday, March 16, 2011 11:14 am

Turns out he (Chaz from T y M) was sick and cancelled his NOLA show the night before as well – just woulda been nice to know in advance. Prolly woulda hurt Fitz’s turnout pretty bad though. I know my 6 friends and I woulda hit up the Young Empires show (also FREE) at Mango’s if we had known of the cancellation in advance.

P&L def rocked and Prince Rama, novelty or no, was just enthralling to see/hear. Would love to see them again.

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