Live Review: Bonobo at 9:30 Club, 11-10-10

Let me preface the following bitchfest by acknowledging that i realize this is nobody’s fault but mine, but, hey, it’s my blog (and Meg’s, too, natch), so what are you going to do? Nothing. And like it.

This was supposed to be a HUGE beat freak week in DC, and wouldn’t you know it, damn near all my plans fell through to make the most of it. To kick things off, The Gaslamp Killer was supposed to be at DC9 with Daedalus this past weekend, but what with their recent legal issues, that show didn’t happen. Yes, it was rescheduled for a club in Baltimore, but after the late night affair that was the LET extravaganza, i just didn’t have it in me to make the trek. Sure, shame on me, but it was what it was.

i allowed myself to pass that one by, reassured by my tickets to see TokiMONSTA and Bonobo last night at the 9:30. Now, i ALWAYS check around 10 am on the day of a given concert at the 9:30 to see when the sets actually are slated to start. With the exception of two shows of the dozens and dozens i’ve seen there, the 9:30 is EXCELLENT at actually sticking to published start times. Anyway, the day got away from me, and when i checked at 6 pm, that 9 pm show i so was looking forward to seeing turned out to be starting at 6:30. Long story short, i missed all of Toki and what i was assured was “only about 10 minutes” of Bonobo. i’m not going to lie, i was pretty pissed at myself, but i can say that the approximate hour of Bonobo’s set that i did see was incredible.

Surrounded by a full band comprised of a multi-reed instrumentalists (dude who played a lot of horns), drummer, couple of guitarists and a gadget tweeker (i believe introduced as electronic percussion), the man himself slapped de bass with a passion for the entire gig. And, of course, Andreya Triana made a few appearances, singing her hits from the recent Black Sands. It’s hard to describe the music, but, of course, i’ll try. Imagine a post-sex glow vibe amalgam of funk, jazz, Eastern and beat, right when you’re almost through the refactory period. Yeah, that works.

i’ve got to say, this was quite possibly the largest crowd i’ve ever seen at a 9:30 Club early show, and the crowd only swelled as the gig continued. Sure, a lot of them were club hopping ass hats, but at least their taste in music was admirable. Clearly, the entire room gladly would have stayed and grooved all night long had the club permitted it.

Next time Bonobo comes to town, i will check the website set time early and often, i tell you what, as i do not want to miss a second of his set next time.

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