Tour Tales

Dopapod Rattles The Roof In Boca Raton

Dopapod Rattles The Roof In Boca Raton

Dopapod’s stop at the Funky Buddha Lounge on Friday, October 12 for a late-night romp was at the top of this month’s show to-do list, and with good reason. Formed at Berklee College of Music, Dopapod has blown up on the festival circuit over the past two years, with notable performances at powerhouses from Bonnaroo to Campo Bisco. The now-Brooklyn-based quartet is known for its unique, avant-garde musical style and high-energy live performances. There was a lot of excitement surrounding the show on Friday in Boca Raton, and by the looks of the packed house and steady cheers, Dopapod’s visit exceeded expectations.   

Dopapod’s stop at the Funky Buddha Lounge on Friday, October 12 for a late-night romp was at the top of this month’s show to-do list, and with good reason. Formed at Berklee College of Music, Dopapod has blown up on the festival circuit over the past two years, with notable performances at powerhouses from Bonnaroo to Campo Bisco. The now-Brooklyn-based quartet is known for its unique, avant-garde musical style and high-energy live performances. There was a lot of excitement surrounding the show on Friday in Boca Raton, and by the looks of the packed house and steady cheers, Dopapod’s visit exceeded expectations.

Fusik kicked off the night of music at approximately 9:45 p.m., and began things on a funky note. The band’s bouncy grooves quickly got everyone moving and warmed up for the dance party, playing the perfect role in setting the tone for night. The five-piece radiated the kind of energy that diminished the notion that they were merely an opener. The bar was set high, and Dopapod was left with no choice but to rise to the occasion, and blow the roof right off the Funky Buddha.

As the filled venue became pungent with excitement, Dopapod struck the first chords just shy of midnight, and ignited a musical wildfire. The band hit the ground running, apparent in opening song, “French Bowling.” Taking almost no time to heat up, the free-flowing, heavy space funk facilitated a high haze, thick enough to cut with a knife. 

Dopapod’s onstage communication was impressive up-close, especially via the even transitions and smooth improvisational skills. The powerful percussive presence of Neal “Fro” Evans, as well as Chuck Jones’s vibrant bass playing, crafted an elaborate rhythmic foundation, which allowed guitarist Rob Compa to lock in fairly quickly. Keyboardist Eli Winderman took the reins and guided the band through a series of peaks and drops that took the audience on magical melodic excursion.

Winderman’s wining keyboards displayed countless tastes of greatness that channeled Jamie Shields, from the New Deal, and his ability to take control of a jam without overshadowing his bandmates was a remarkable feat. He was consistently synchronized in all aspects, and seemed to never miss a key over the course of the night. Despite all of the hype surrounding his dexterity on the keyboards – due to his recent involvement with the new-found super-group Kick Rocks, featuring Jon Gutwillig (guitarist; Disco Biscuits), Clay Parnell (bass; Brothers Past, BioDiesel), and Mike Greenfield (drums; Lotus) – Winderman still managed to remain humble at work.

 

There was a moment during the song “Turning Knobs,” where the band seemed to meet within an elevated consciousness, and from that time, all dimensions of the music seemed to flow together and feed off one another. Dopapod’s ability to perpetuate enormous waves birthed a unique, gargantuan four-headed musical monster. With so many acts incorporating electronic music now, seeing a band capture such energy and intensity without the use of any computers and MIDI cables was a refreshing change of pace. 

It was a welcomed surprise to see that the band had brought its own tailored light rig. Luke Stratton, the mastermind behind Dopapod’s lighting and sound, used the intimate venue as a vessel to create a pristine audio-visual experience. Not only was the sound crisp and clear throughout the entire venue, but his lighting scheme also created an unblemished visual translation of the music, as Stratton stayed in perfect time with the musicians.

Toward the middle of the set, Compa served up a solo treat with rare track, “Carolina.” He dedicated the performance to a friend named Carolina, but following some debated banter, it was renamed “Margarita.” Different from all others played that night, the song had a large lyrical emphasis and a much slower tempo. Although a change of pace, “Carolina” was an enjoyable melody, which would have perhaps sat better as an acoustic interlude.

Their set concluded with the uplifting single, “We Are Not Alone” segueing into a particularly funkadelic version of “Flipped.” Following the trend Dopapod has set in recent shows, “Flipped” contained teases to multiple songs by indie rockers, Fleet Foxes. The nonstop, raw force that fueled the two-hour power set produced a supernatural musical experience, hitting brain-shaking high notes. The earth-shattering jams kept everyone dancing the entire night, and there was not a single person in the venue sitting down.

After taking a quick break to regroup, grab a drink and bask in the surreal energy that filled the air, the band indulged the pleading fans and returned to the stage once more for an encore. Compa joked, “It’s always awkward when the crowd demands more and we have no place else to go.” The encore consisted of a colossal rendition of “My Elephant Vs. Your Elephant,” ending the night with one last lingering jam that rattled the roof of the intimate Boca brewery.

Photos and videos by Jonny Scoblionko / Melodysiac © 2012

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victor

October 15th, 2012

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