Mr. and Mrs. Skrillex? Yes, hello, about your son. We’ll need him to stay after class for a little tutoring in how to run a dance party at a music festival. Don’t worry. We already have a pair of tutors lined up.
After a monotonous, grating headline rave last night, Canadian electro-funk duo Chromeo showed how a dance party doesn’t have to be dumb with a slick performance Sunday night at Austin City Limits Music Festival.
Propulsive but not repetitive, Chromeo’s Dave-1 and P-Thugg employed all the tools of party engineers. The light show mesmerized, and even the boilerplate entreaties to the audience to get hyped got the same tongue-in-cheek twist (courtesy P-Thugg’s voice modulator) that marks all of the pair’s work.
Chromeo bounced around the RetailMeNot stage in a relay race from guitars to drum kits to mannequin-legged keyboards, ever illuminated by a hot wash of white light. The crowd pulsed to gleeful vintage cheese like "Bonafied Lovin'" and "Fancy Footwork." On tracks from the duo’s excitingly more mature new album "White Women," Chromeo struck the perfect balance between basal ganglia tickling and savvy genre mining. The Hall and Oates-ish "Old ’45s" didn’t sacrifice heart for cheap grooves, and "Jealous (I Ain’t With It)" worked up a frenzy.
Dave-1, feeling under the weather, lost his vocals in the mix as the set wore on and relied on the backing track more than was ideal. But it didn’t dampen his ability to throw a party: He told security to chill in an effort to get more ladies hoisted up on shoulders.
Even with mainstream pop mastermind Zedd shooting off fireworks in the distance, Chromeo still packed a stage tight ten years into their career. Here’s to tenure.