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  HOOD w/ cLOUDEAD and DNTel  
  The Knitting Factory  
  Los Angeles, CA  
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Great lineup for IDM lovers at the Knitting Factory in Hollywood. Normally this kind of act is reserved for The Alter-Knit, but tonight we're visiting the big boys room thanks to touring Yorkshiremen Hood. The crowd, especially early in the show, was sparse but eager for music. The sound was it's usually top quality this night, and the normal buzz of LA schmoozers wasn't there so the music was clear and enjoyable.

Local Silverlake artist DNtel started off the night. He has produced some beautiful records (most recently Life is Full of Possibilities) and has of late has wowed local LA audiences at sold out shows across town. He was a late addition to this concert, and his performance was short but contained several gems. However, it didn't sparkle in my mind, mainly due to the absence of any tracks containing vocals. It was the average IDM show with little movement on stage from a performer surrounded by electronic equipment. And there were no moving pictures accompanying the show, no visuals of any kind. About the only option was closing your eyes for a moment and enjoying the emotions that the music evoked. Overall I enjoyed the performance but there were some elements from his recorded material obviously missing.

cLOUDDEAD appeared on stage and I didn't really know what to expect with such a large group (5 people total). The music is solid IDM with a twist as they add 2 vocalist, or shall I say, "rhyme-sayers". They were greeted strongly by their large following of fans, and we in turn were treated with a strong performance. After the initial shock of the vocal stylings wore off, I realized that I liked it even though it reminded me of a Mr. Show skit at times, and I felt like I was revisiting my old "thug" days from college. A good portion of the audience was obviously there to see them perform, and cLOUDDEAD gave them something to remember. The broken beats and ambient noise created a tense atmosphere which, when combined with the rap (which reached terminal velocity at times), pulled me in different directions. Definitely worth checking out if you have a soft spot for IDM, obscure hip hop, or both!

Hood came on stage and there instantly seemed to be more life in the room. The live performance proceeded to take both IDM and alternative music to another level by injecting the normally boring IDM live shows with a British rock band's attitude. The vibe of the performance was much more spritely than that the other groups: they jumped around the stage and showed a genuine pleasure in performing, as they made the club come alive after being lulled into a haze earlier. cLOUDDEAD joined Hood for a few songs, which invigorated the band and the audience even more. I have heard many complaints about Hood's lack of a true live feel to the show, but I did not see this tonight as I thought they were just shy of brilliant.

On the whole, it was a decent overall show and I would recommend seeing these bands to anyone who knows what they are getting into with the mellow nature of IDM. If you are new to the scene I would recommend it as well, as this was about as exciting a peformance as you are likely to get with this genre. It seems to me that IDM shows tend to be extremely boring for someone not completely consumed with either the artists or the genre of music.

Related Links:
  Cold House, Hood's latest album.
An East Coast perspective on this tour.

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