ACL '09: The Dirty Projectors Clean Up Quite Nice

The Dirty Projectors may have been around since 2002, but make no mistake: 2009 is the Brooklyn-based act's breakthrough year, thanks tot he success of the band's phenomenal earlier-this-year-released Bitte Orca, a true gem of a folktronipop of a record, riff with lush instrumentations and as impressive a colelction of vocal harmonies as one is likely to find on record all year--if not even longer.

But, even so, going up against Passion Pit at the other end of the festival grounds, and with audiences setting up camp at other stages in anticipation of performances from Girl Talk and The Dead Weather, which were scheduled to immediately follow the Projector's set, a rather disappointing audience turned out to check out the band's offering. A shame, too, as the band's performance stands as one of the most technically impressive displays of the weekend.

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Lest there exist any questions, have no doubt: The band's shimmering on-record sound, as difficult to re-create live as it may appears, was performed impeccably and with a jaw-dropping cohesiveness on Sunday afternoon, and those who did manage to stop by the band's set were treated to an incessantly catchy show. Sure, the show may have inspired some particularly gaudy hippie dance moves in its audience, but, particularly during the band's R&B-infused "Stillness Is The Move," no one cared. The multi-part harmonies were pulled off with ease, the drum beat and guitar picking holding it all together in a ball of yarn that seemed rife for unraveling at a moment's notice, even if it (compellingly enough) managed to stay intact.

A truly awe-inspiring display--and a must-see should the band tour through the region in the near future.

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