Review By: Mike Gerry
Photos By: Jamie Platus
Atlanta was treated to one perfect night of music at The Earl on Thursday night. With a lineup of both the known, Jacco Gardner, and the unknown, Dinner and EZTV, we had no clue just what this night had in store for us. And this was one big unexpected journey that ended on a complete music high that wasn’t going to wear off for a while.First up was a Captured Tracks artist, Dinner, the alias for Danish producer and singer Anders Rhedin, who spends his time between LA, Berlin and Copenhagen. Walking in a few minutes late, Dinner was already into a song, and when we say into it, we mean really into it. The first prevailing thought was WTF, here is a dude onstage by himself, with a heavy synth dance beat, looking straight out of the 80’s, deep baritone voice, dancing his collective ass off. Or maybe he was doing aerobics, we aren’t sure. But pretty sure there was some yoga somewhere in there. Probable was meditation happening on stage. Dinner is everything that’s right about weird, the whole thing is for us weirdos to let loose to. “I’m not sure what’s happening right now, but I think I love it” was whispered throughout the crowd over and over. Dinner is very theatrical onstage. His dance moves are sometimes more like marching. His “I don’t give a f*ck attitude” is infectious. Love it or don’t, he is doing him and enjoying the heck out of it. It grabs your attention, and brings you right into his open arms. At one point Dinner literally crawled on his hands and knees into the crowd, then laid down, got up and danced around people as they stared in amazement, not sure what to do, but loving every moment of it. Then back on his knees, Dinner directly sang to a young lady, his single “Girl.” After that Dinner spoke up, “This isn’t going to be cheesy, I promise,” and proceeds to tell everyone in the crowd to raise one hand, then the other. “Feel the energy, we are all in this together” Anders shouted, and then he danced, hands flaring, arms bouncing as he told the crowd, “I’m gonna need Atlanta to just dance, dance, dance.” And by god The Earl danced right along with Dinner. Dinner was an unexpected surprise. We had no clue the show was going to start this way. Go see him live and let Dinner win you over just like he won the crowd on this night. The electro darkwave musician currently has his first three EP’s together, Three EPs, 2012-2014, out now on Captured Tracks and his working on his official full length debut. Up next was Brooklyn’s EZTV, who just released their debut album, Calling Out, on Friday after the show via Captured Tracks. EZTV trotted out two guitars, bass, and drums; we knew this show was about to change directions. How does a band like this follow up a one man dancing machine like Dinner that had the whole crowd in a weird frenzy? Well they do what they do best, and for EZTV they lay the grooves on. EZTV stepped on stage and went into it, grabbing the crowd by the hips to sway along. The type of dancing may have changed, but the crowd couldn’t fight it. With songs like “Trampoline”, “There Goes My Girl”, “That’s Where You Belong”, and “Dusk in the Sky”, EZTV are able to bring the sunny vibes even to the sorest of subjects, much like another Brooklyn/NJ band Real Estate. But where they seem to differ comes in the guitar work. Calling Out was produced by Woods’ Jarvis Taveniere and you can hear the influence he had within some of the guitar riffs thrown into this sunny dream pop. There are even hints of southern guitar slyly built in. We left the set as new fans of EZTV, eagerly anticipating the first official New Music Friday with Calling Out being one of the highlights. This album will get plenty of spin time this summer, no doubt for us. EZTV were the perfect bridge between Dinner and Jacco Gardner up next. With two good attention grabbing openers out the way, the Netherlands’ Jacco Gardner joined a crowd that was already into the music and ready to go on the journey that only neo-psych specialists Jacco Gardner can bring them on. Jacco likes to use classical instruments with raw psychedelic effects to recreate a late 60’s trip on peyote. With two albums to choose from for the setlist, including the critically acclaimed 2015 album, Hypnophobia, out now via Polyvinyl (and on many best of 2015 lists, including our own), Jacco Gardner could choose a perfect mix of uptempo psych to wet the audience’s appetite to take them to another world. At times, Jacco Gardner can feel like the trippiest of MGMT, and the most psychedelic part of Tame Impala, but using only the classic instruments. Other times you hear in Jacco Gardner’s music an ode to when the Beatles decided to experiment with drugs and give the world some of the greatest music ever. It feels like any authentic 60’s pyschedlic rock band but yet still so new and fresh. The 60’s acid doses are strong in these gents. Oh and that Korg, we bow down to those next level sweet sounds. Jacco Gardner took Atlanta straight to outerspace on this evening. If you closed your eyes it just felt like being on a crazy trip where somehow you’ve ended up as a character in a sped up version of Willy Wonka and the Chocolate Factory, Jacco Gardner as the soundtrack taking you through the highs and lows of that movie. Or perhaps a character in a Scooby Doo adventure. Whatever the trip is your looking for, Jacco Gardner will get you there.
Jacco Gardner closed down one amazing evening with the stellar single “Find Yourself”, closing the night that started with a “WTF is happening?”, and ended with a “WTF just happened, and how do I do this every single night?” Hypnophobia was already on our list of best albums so far of the year, and live this band took it up a notch. We are forever on board with Jacco Gardner.
The show was so great we had to buy some vinyl, and getting EZTV’s album a few days early was perfect, sadly for us, Jacco Gardner vinyl was sold out, so we shall we ordering that one!
Listen to EZTV’s “Trampoline” on Soundcloud:
Check out Dinner’s “Girl”: