Monday, August 02, 2004

I've been to I think nine Cex shows now, and every one of them was a totally singular experience. Like time #2, at the old Ottobar in the summer of 2001, he was playing with a bunch of rappers, and he said he was really tired and he didn't really feel like playing a show, but he brought the Daft Punk album and just kind of figured that everyone could just have a dance party instead of watching him perform. And he started to do it, and everyone was amped on it, but then the Ottobar's CD player started skipping and he had to get up and play a show after all. And then time #4 was at the Sidebar when I was home for Christmas break, must have been January 2002, the entire set was him freestyling over Timbaland instrumentals. He had a table set up by the stage where people would write topic and he'd rap about them. Rjyan isn't a great rapper or anything, but he's a really funny guy, and it was just fun to hear him talk over beats for a little while. Last time he played in town, he had a big electronic soundboard thing and a drummer, and they did all these long spacey mostly-instrumental tracks, and it was really boring and I may have left early. But last night was the best Cex show I've seen in years. He had another drummer and another electronic soundboard thing, so I thought maybe I'd hate it, but then they locked into an actual honest-to-god beat, a big undulating pulsey thing, and they rode it for a while and I just kind of spaced out and forgot to listen to the lyrics, which is weird since I usually like Rjyan's lyrics a lot. And then all the people from the opening band (some Joan of Arc side project thing) joined him onstage, and they were all playing percussion instruments and, like, banging on pot lids and the backs of chairs and the beat just got more undulating and pulsey, and it was like Black Dice or something except that I don't like Black Dice at all - I think they're really terrible - and this was great! And it just built and built and moved for like half an hour and then they did an old Cex song and then another song like that, and it ended with Rjyan making barfing noises, which was funny. Rjyan didn't really talk between songs, and usually my favorite parts of Cex shows are when he's talking between songs and not actually playing songs, which is a little bit embarrassing to admit. But I didn't mind at all. Rjyan is really tapping into something here, some tribal spaceout thing that just totally works without being retrograde or "dub" or any sort of lame thing like that, something that just totally moves and works and hits you hard and locks you in. Rjyan's next album might be something amazing.

The Village is stupid.