May 24, 2011
Masonic Lodge, Hollywood Forever Cemetery
Even before the release of his self-titled album, U.K. electronic artist James Blake had already captured the eyes and ears of every single music website and blog on the internet. The much deserved hype came from his covers of artists like Feist and Joni Mitchell. Anticipation started to build up for his first full-length which was released in February. To many, the glitchy post-dubstep album is considered one of the best of 2011.
Last night, Blake played the second of his only two shows in Los Angeles at the historic Masonic Lodge at Hollywood Forever Cemetery. The show sold out within mere minutes of going on sale and the tension and excitement was apparent in the building as the crowd waited for Blake to make an appearance.
With a guitarist and drummer backing him up, Blake sat in between two keyboards and played songs mostly from his LP and a few from his numerous EP's.
As soon as Blake sang the line, “My bother and my sister don't speak to me, but I don't blame them,” the crowd screamed and cheered at the recognition of song, “I Never Learnt To Share” where he repeats the same line over and over under the sounds of keys and glitchy electro beats. His version of “Limit To Your Love” originally a Feist song, showcases his soulful voice and piano playing skills with the sounds of pulsating drums and bass in between.
The venue almost turned into a dance club with song, “Klavierwerke” off from the EP of the same title. The mostly instrumental track consisted of drums and bass on repeat that was catchy enough to get some of the crowd dancing. At one point, the samples were so loud and heavy, I could feel it in my chest.
Blake definitely proved that he is well worth all the hype he has received. Let's just hope he has enough staying power to remain there.
Critic's Bias: I'm not going to lie: James Blake is a major babe. I can stare at the pretty all day long.
The Crowd: An older and seemingly more mature crowd. Was this an all ages show? Perhaps the teenagers couldn't buy their tickets in time.
Random Notebook Dump: Walking to my car, past all the graves in pitch dark was creepy as hell.
Give Me My Month
Tep and the Logic
I Never Learnt To Share
To Care (Like You)
Limit To Your Love
The Wilhelm Scream