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MUSIC: Communicator Beats Up The Black Box

Wednesday, July 10, 2013

 

Glenna Van Nostrand of Communicator takes the Black Box Theatre to another place.

For the pre-4th of July festivities going on at AS220's Black Box Theatre on 95 Empire Street in Providence, an act unlike any other in Communicator headlined a solid bill this past Wednesday that was bound to invade your soul with mellow and groovy rhythms. Littlefoot, Alligator Indian and Oulipo also played, what better time and place to kick off a flurry of musical fireworks than at 95 Empire? AS220 was full of pomp & circumstance that made it the prime place to be to ring in the biggest holiday of the summer.

Littlefoot

Lead by the sheer beauty and dreamy tunes of Erica Sutherland on guitar, keys and vocals, Littlefoot started the night off exquisitely. "Sad Love Song", "Maps & Hands", "Head In The Clouds" and "Fever Dream" we're my favorite songs from Littlefoot's performance. Truly magical stuff, no wonder why The Rice Cakes' Roz Raskin played bass in the band when they started out. Littlefoot is currently working on their debut album but you can check a few tracks at their BandCamp page for your listening pleasure.

Alligator Indian

Up next was a dream pop duo called Alligator Indian that reminded me of Portishead but a little more ambient. They definitely brought a chilled out atmosphere, at the beginning I thought they were lacking that extra dose of power but then they did with a shrieking note from their keyboard. A weird name but a solid mix of psychedelic, new wave, trip-hop and bouncy beats had Alligator Indian sounding like they were from another planet.

Oulipo

An indie-pop band that has an infectiously energetic sound in Oulipo came up and a unique sense of harmony flooded throughout the room. Their music had a neo-disco vibe that I enjoyed, but why was nobody dancing? I bet Oulipo is the quintessential party band back in their hometown of Raleigh, NC. "Father/Pastor", "Hanging Hook", "Cosmos" and "Amsterdam Shag" highlighted a fantastic performance that consisted of a lot of different dimensions being shot through the speakers. Oulipo has an album out called Primitive Ways that you gotta get, it's guaranteed to be a good experience for your eardrums.

Communicator

There are rock bands, folk bands, blues bands, funk bands, reggae bands, indie bands and then there's Communicator. Influenced by Glenna Van Nostrand's revolutionary musical project Omnivore, Glenna and her fellow bandmate Ken Linehan performed with Glenna looping her voice around continuously while Ken performed on a mini keyboard to present a transiently psychedelic experience. Every time I hear music that Glenna does I always think of my mind as if was floating through the clouds to another world, kind of like a musical teleportation device. They had the audience's full attention and it's always a treat to see something excitingly different, Communicator was just that to finish off an evening of eclectic pop tinged tunes.

At AS220 you'll always encounter something that'll stick in your mind like gum on a dirty sneaker. Log on to as220.org to find out what's happening at The Black Box Theatre and at The Performance Space.

 

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