Live Performance Reviews – .Brief 1. –

Posted: October 8, 2015 in 2. Live Performances - 3rd Yr

– What’s working in the performance?
– What’s not so good?
– How does this performance relate to a wider field of practice / genre?
– How does this genre relate to its audience – what does this kind of music do for people? – Is this a current genre?
– Is it contemporary – is it using music as a way of communicating to people?
– Is this genre still capable of creating new audiences?

And then
– Why is this genre relevant to you?
– How does your work relate to the performances you’ve picked? – What is your performance going to look like?


In this performance I particularly like what MTV call the ‘unplugged’ vibe. Electro-Acoustic instruments amped up with as little sound processing as possible. Some panning is included giving depth to the track through stereo imaging, this gives this live recording a sense of the stage layout. Obviously an intense track, talking about a relationship with his surfboard on the ocean waves in the moment, The rhythm and tempo of the track are accelerated and there is held sustained notes at places, almost creating ‘wavy’ feel to the groove of the track. Broken phrases of drums and the cymbals work help portray a feeling of surfing and crashing into the waves. We can’t help but hear his voice break about half way in and then throughout the performance. This could be off putting to some people, it shows his passion for the track and fits the genre of Alt Rock in my opinion. Performing almost near ‘hardcore screaming’ lyrics over an acoustic set up is quite a contrast, it brings the attention of the audience toward the vocal performance and narrative. The track  makes you want to move at least one part of your body! I personally don’t know of any energetic acoustic ‘jivable’ rock at this moment, it appears to me that most acoustic music around Newport is folk singer songwriter based…?  I do think this is contemporary music but just out of the main spotlight of this generations recycled music. Maybe the 18-30+ age group would still be moved by this surf/stoner rock style music providing the performance were  good too. I find this track is a little relevant to me because i am currently trying to bring alive some songs that i have written on the acoustic guitar. Starting with acoustic instruments is the basis for many songwriters & producers and in order to find and curate a sound for that particular track we have to look at the influences behind the inspiration.

The strings are a main focus in this performance, the musicians are playing well together. (59secs in) I love to re-create string staccato phrases using my midi samples. Personally i would have came in with distorted guitars and minimal timpani drums on the second verse to elevate the atmosphere. I say this because this track is an infamous rock anthem and although the spanish style flicks make up the full picture it really has become something else by keeping the acoustic thing running through. I think this is a relevant video because the singer songwriter & melancholic ballad can be a popular hit when performed well live. I believe all music with or without lyrics are ways of communicating with people and every year a new generation is born. By mix mashing everything we’ve ever known we hope to create new versions of art to pass on. Guiltily i admit, as much as his make up is as bad as some tv soap opera’s Bon Jovi is a childhood favourite along sing side many others.  I’ve always looked to artists that played the guitar in there videos, i have also started to compose a track of my own using some methods we have recently learnt on CSM and this track as my reference.

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