Black Moth Super Rainbow, The Casket Girls, Datahowler, New Fumes The Loft Tuesday, November 6
A packed crowd at The Loft was setting its own agenda on Election Night, one that included lots of synth, delay and effects. At the top of the ballot was Black Moth Super Rainbow, a band for which the adjective "enigmatic" could not be more appropriate. BMSR is guided by Tom Fec (aka Tobacco), a man who sets the bar for obfuscation with processed vocals, presented from behind the lid of a suitcase containing an electronic kit used to process his voice and inject noise into the mix.
Unlike past shows, Tobacco delivered his performance standing, looking slimmed down in a hoodie and shorts. Next to him stood the diminutive Maux Boyle (aka The Seven Fields of Aphelion), leading the swooping synthesizers that define their sound as much as Tobacco's Vocoder. Behind them was the funk-rock trio of Graveface on guitar, Bullsmear on bass and Iffernaut on drums.
BMSR's set skewed towards new release Cobra Juicy, an album that, despite the ever-present Vocoder and ode-to-evil lyrics, is poppier than ever. With a more static visual backdrop than in the past, the band played the songs straight. The 90-minute set had the crowd jumping, especially a few rabid fans trying to mosh in front of the stage.
Preceding BMSR was the Casket Girls, with Graveface providing synth backing to Savannah musicians Elsa and Phaedra Greene, and a drummer pounding his kit into oblivion. With interwoven harmonies and choreography that recalled the Supremes, their songs about break-ups ("there will be no starting over, it's just over") put a dark spin on traditional girl-group subjects.
Starting the evening were two local electronic solo acts. Daniel Huffman, appearing as New Fumes, kicked the evening off. Primarily known for work with bands including Polyphonic Spree, Huffman mixed a wash of samples and guitar into a cacophony of noise bordering somewhere between music and air raid sirens. Wearing a goat mask as a hat, Huffman ended his 30-minute set with a forlorn guitar loop that turned into a happy march. That was followed by a 30-minute set from Datahowler, who constructed electronic missives from an array samples, both instrumental and vocal. If votes had been cast, BMSR would have carried the night, but not unanimously.