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Friday, April 17, 2009

Ice Palace and Cloud Cult with Margot and the Nuclear So & Sos

ON FURTHER REVIEW

live music in New England...

Ice Palace at the Paradise 4/7/07
Photos by Sean Hafferty

DATELINE - BOSTON: As most of you have noticed, last week was a pretty music-packed time here in Boston. There's been the WBCN Rock 'n' Roll Rumble (which has occupied our hearts and minds on this blog for the last two weeks now.) There were some other great shows as well... With the Rumble on last Tuesday (April 7th)

Jen and I decided to hit
The Paradise for Ice Palace, Cloud Cult and Margot & the Nuclear So & So's
...even though, one of our favorites, Mates of State was at HOB with the Black Kids. Well, you can't be everywhere. The following is our combined impressions from the night...

Ice Palace was Impressive

First up was Ice Palace, a band who was new to most of the crowd. As the opener, Ice Palace, who just finished recording their new CD, found themselves playing before a responsive, appreciative crowd. They really impressed; their set was vivacious, and the music was a terrific fit for the evening's lineup. So, fans of Cloud Cult, AiH, newer Death Cab for Cutie and even Clap Your Hands Say Yeah should be delighted by the band. We also enjoyed how charismatic and approachable the band seemed.

Standouts Cloud Cult were Amazing

The Best stuff all night long came from Cloud Cult, who last came through town with Mason Proper. If you are not familiar with Cloud Cult, they have an amazing musical breadth that goes from layered sounds to simple arrangements and from funky beats to in your face. All with a subtle intensity that come through even more when you see them live.


Cloud Cult's music takes on a Dream-like Quality

Cloud Cult's sonic presentation was amazing and ADHD-friendly. Projecting on the white brick wall in the back were Pink Floyd "The Wall"-esque animation (minus the scary), and the band had big energy to share with the crowd. AND, a favorite, the artist-cum-trumpet player-cum-singer who painted with musically-guided gusto and created a fabulous art piece to be auctioned off at the end of the night. Just great!

Margot and the Nuclear So & Sos

Having seen Margot and the Nuclear So & Sos before, we were excited to check them out again. (They were one of the big reasons we showed up.) Unfortunately, something wasn't quite there in their performance... The band's energy level was low and their sound and appearance was a bit anemic. (This being said, their percussion was outstanding.)


Margot don't play like their CD, which can be both good or bad - depending on what you like. Regardless on what's on their recordings, we were expecting better. Perhaps in need of a break (a night off from the grind), The So & Sos, sadly, paled by comparison with the two fine shows we saw precede them.

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