The Knocks & RAC >> Sometimes you just need to say F it. Screw chicks and screw hanging with the homies. Sometimes you just need to dance like no one’s watching, Flashdance style. Luckily for me, last Saturday night The Knocks and RAC were kind enough to drop in to the Warfield and provide me that very dance party. A very young dance party where I felt like the creepy old guy who still cruises high school parties when he comes home from college for Thanksgiving probably 3 years after he should’ve cut that out. Regardless, heck of a fun night and here’s how it went down.
Their opening band was called Speak and as a late arriving crowd tardily strolled in they played, what I considered teen pop rock reminiscent of a high school battle of the bands with a strong One Direction influence. That’s not to say they weren’t talented, the lead singer for one would come out later with other bands and add some strong vocal contributions. They just seemed young and serching for their own voice. Also some of the skinniest jeans I’ve ever seen. I’d even go so far as to call them anorexic jeans.
After they finished up The Warfield quickly filled to capacity almost simultaneously with The Knocks appearance on stage. I was starting to get excited as I’d never seen them before and didn’t know much about them but could feel the buzz in the young crowd.
The Knocks is made up of two guys, B-Roc and Jpatt, and the anticipation grew as they wheeled out their equipment which can only be described as a jungle gym of keyboards, drum kits and DJ equipment. It was pretty wild; it like was one of those dueling piano bars in Vegas only hand made for the electronic age. Songs started slowly but they quickly both got up to speed adding a beat here a drum kit there, overlaying vocals and continuously adding more to what I guess you could call remixes. I was expecting almost a rap battle of sorts but it evolved more in to a jazz like compliation feeding off each other in a hip hop and electric inspired orchestra. Two female dancers appeared on stage about the 3rd song and the party was on from there. The tempo and intensity of the jams increased exponentially as did the pelvic thrusting and twerkin of the fly girls on either side of them. My favorite songs were 'Brightside' and 'Dancing With The DJ' which I guarantee most of you would recognize given a listen. They definitely got the crowd energy up and bodies moving, and had the building well prepped for headliner RAC.
I thought I was familiar with RAC, and by familiar I mean I knew 2 or 3 songs and had put them on shuffle on Spotify a few times. I could not have been more off or more pleasantly surprised and a ringing endorsement of why you need to see live performances to really understand someone’s music. I thought R.A.C. was a DJ. Whoops! Well I am not totally wrong theres is a DJ and mixing element to their music but when 5 people came out on stage with a full instrumental ensemble I was lost. Everything I’d seen on Spotify or SoundCloud always had said RAC Mix or RAC Remix but they actually perform the songs its not just adding beats over radio favorites. It’s kind of a cross between live DJ remixing and live band covers all with a unique light upbeat twist that makes you like songs you already liked even more. I know that might not make much sense, so you’re welcome. Now you’re exactly where my head was at as they started to perform. To confuse things even more they also have quite a few original jams that blend so well with what they’re doing its often hard to tell where one song ends and another begins. They started off with versions of Two Door Cinema Club’s 'Something Good Can Work' and their original single 'Cheap Sunglasses'. After that I pretty much stopped paying attention which song was which and got lost in the party with the rest of the twenty-somethings and danced my feet off as best a 31-year old white guy can.
Both The Knocks and RAC really brought their A-game and finished of the las stop of their tour on a high note. Whether it was all the teens rolling face, the couples sucking face, or me awkwardly dancing off beat, one thing all in attendence had in common was we had a blast and left with smiles on our faces. Like I said, sometimes you just gotta say F it, and dance!