Tour Tales

Beats Antique Brings The Mystique To Culture Room

Beats Antique Brings The Mystique To Culture Room

Upon arrival to the Culture Room on Wednesday, October 10, the lot was jammed with cars and the rain fell hard. But, fans would endure much worse to spend the night with renowned world music act, Beats Antique. As the band prepared for showtime in the green room for a first-ever Fort Lauderdale show, it was time to digest some opening act action.

Upon arrival to the Culture Room on Wednesday, October 10, the lot was jammed with cars and the rain fell hard. But, fans would endure much worse to spend the night with renowned world music act, Beats Antique. As the band prepared for showtime in the green room for a first-ever Fort Lauderdale show, it was time to digest some opening act action.

It was a surprise to walk into Lynx, the first of two opening acts, of whom we thought would play second. But, despite the sparse crowd, she appeared to feel right at home on stage, as her free-spirited music helped set the mood for the rest of the night. Her set concluded with an interesting beat boxing jam that displayed her range as a solo performer.

Unfortunately, the following act, Mux Mool, proved to be a one-dimensional, generic electro act. The bass seemed to drown out all the melodic potential of the music, and Mool might as well have played a stream of the same song the whole time. With nothing but a beat pad and laptop on stage, it’s safe to say he fell into the notorious category of lazy DJs. His set came to a close with an odd remix of “Love Shack” which was basically just the song with a few over-powering bass lines in the background. The crowd seemed indifferent at he left the stage, and everyone anxiously awaited Beats Antique’s grand entrance. With the release of their latest album, Contraption Vol. II, many fans were looking forward to seeing some new songs in a live setting.

From opener, “Crush,” the audience knew this mystical, Middle Eastern influenced trio was not messing around. Entrancing vocals were manipulated electronically and combined with the percussive power of Sidecar Tommy Cappel on drums. The uplifting violin riffs of David Satori established a musical presence that seemed to elevate the consciousness of every member of the audience. When the beautiful, belly dancing Zoe Jakes made her grandiose entrance, it became quite apparent that she was the aesthetic focal point of the performance. Her sleek, sensual movements impeccably complemented the music.

It was quite a treat to see Lynx join Beats Antique on stage for “Crooked Muse,” a song off of Contraption Vol. II, which features her crooning cameo. Lynx’s spiritual guitar and melodic vocals fit nicely with the band. Shortly after the song began, Jakes emerged from backstage, complete with a mermaid tail. While Lynx sang the crowd into a trance, Jakes acted out an ocean swimmer scene. As the song progressed, Jakes evolved, shedding her tail and revealing her sea legs.

As the night continued, the band displayed an impressive range of musical ability and an engaging spectacle. Jakes’s captivating presence enabled the band to create a more unique experience that really unmatched other electronic acts. Countless women in the audience attempted to mimic her magical movements, and she had every man there eating out of the palm of her luring hand. It was great to see her interact with the crowd on a number of a occasions; teasing the front row, leaning into the sea, striking poses and winking, one fan at a time. Jakes always appeared to make eye contact with one member of the audience, which made her performance even more personal.

The stage setting included a number of Middle Eastern designs, complete with oriental rugs and a chandelier hanging in the center of their customized lighting rig. The production aspect set a perfect tone for the night, and very much accenting the Beats Antique performance. The various personas Jakes utilized also helped emphasize the numinous qualities of the music. The trio displayed tremendous chemistry, and song transitions and segues were virtually seamless. Onstage communication was key, as the music seemed to flow almost effortlessly. Although Jakes left the stage a number of times for costume changes, Cappel and Satori never allowed a dull moment. Their transcendent music and animated playing kept the audience engaged throughout.

Toward the end of the show, the band played a version of their unreleased song, “Pandora’s Box.” It began with a bass-heavy, downtempo beat, soon complemented by series of psychedelic, synthesized sounds. As the song progressed, Jakes emerged from backstage wearing a white dress with a parachuting skirt, and antlers that transformed her into a forest god. Dark purple and red light gave way to an otherworldly atmosphere. As Jakes reached center stage, her dress fluttered in waves, propelled by a fan located directly behind her.

The night concluded with a fantastic encore, in which every member of the band put on animal masks – with the exception of Cappel, who wore a Mexican wrestling mask – and danced around on stage. When their final song, “Cat Skillz,” concluded, and the house lights came on, “Bohemian Rhapsody” began to play over the soundsystem. Refusing to end the shenanigans, Cappel returned to the stage along with Jakes, in a lion head. Cappel drummed with the song as the lion led the crowd in a passionate, but wacky, sing-along to the beloved Queen song, closing out the show on an endearing note.

An afterthought: Beats Antique showed South Florida why the act has become such a force in both the electronic and festival circuits. Genre-defying music, mystical presentation, and hilarious onstage hijinks made for a splendid night of entertainment. After the show, herds of people filled the vicinity around Beats Antique’s tour bus in a gesture of praise. And, the band more than earned the after-hours mob love.

Photos and videos by Jonny Scoblionko / Melodysiac © 2012

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victor

October 13th, 2012

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