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October 24, 2008

Crystal Castles - Webster Hall 10.23.08

Thanks to Andy Kim for the pictures

If you haven't seen Crystal Castles before, let me describe what their shows are like. Alice Glass comes onstage, literally screams into a microphone, and completely loses it, with some help from heavy pre-gaming. I know that many of you are probably thinking, "Hey, I could do that. I could be Alice Glass." No, you could never be Alice Glass. Scream into a mic, maybe you can do that. But, you couldn't look as good as she does while yelling.

Obviously, there isn't that much to the live act. Ethan Kath takes care of the sound while Alice jumps into the crowd, pours red wine into open mouths, etc. But, for a reason that I still don't quite understand myself, I had so much fun at this show. Never have I let go of all inhibition on the dance floor like I did tonight. I've always said that I could see how people could potentially lose control to Crystal Castles. Well, I did just that...and that doesn't happen often.

Maybe it's just what their music does to me. The music combined with seeing my indie idol, Alice Glass. Now, I know what 16-year-old boys must feel like when they see MGMT. I didn't even mind that my 5'2" self was getting crushed, or that I'd left with sweat on my body that didn't belong to me.

Not much else to say, but I need to see them again. Go to Crystal Castles if you need some crazy fun in your life. And, try not to let Alice fall while body-surfing. She screamed, "I'm dying," when the supporting crowd crumbled beneath her.

Bonus points for you if you recognize the sample in "Untrust Us" without looking it up.

Untrust Us - Crystal Castles

Mother's Knows Best - Crystal Castles

Crystal Castles


Hiemann Lee on October 24, 2008 at 2:26 AM said...

have my babies alice glass!

Anonymous said...

I only wish the show was about two or three songs longer. I felt like their departure was like a premature ejaculation. I wasn't ready to leave yet!

Anonymous said...

there is showmanship and there's just shit. CC is the latter. i saw the juan maclean a week earlier and they just destroyed these fakers from the north.

lexigirl on October 24, 2008 at 1:06 PM said...

I couldn't agree more with your blog- first time at a Crsytal castle show and I was BLOWN THE FUCK AWAY!! She sings with such intensity and didn't realize that some of the electronic sounds in the songs were actually her voice!! The climbing into the crowd, the writhering on stage, propping her legs up on the speakers- I was in heaven!! BUT I felt left in the lurch when she left the stage- they came on late and left early- sort of sucked...but I would see another show in a heartbeat!

Mimi on October 24, 2008 at 1:47 PM said...

I believe that maximizing the satisfaction received from a show is constrained by how well you manage your pre-show expectations. I did my research on what past shows were like, and I adjusted accordingly. Obviously, if I weren't intrigued by what I'd heard/read about their live shows, I wouldn't have bothered going. Of course, for more obscure acts, research isn't readily available or even possible. But, with an act like Crystal Castles, it's easy to find out that their shows are just crazy and a bit absurd. Alice goes crazy, and usually the crowd responds in the same way. Haven't seen the Juan, so can't really comment on that. But, I'm gonna go out on a limb and say that the Juan and CC are not really on a comparable level, because they're probably not trying to achieve the same thing through their performances. I feel like CC's goal for their live act is to create a crazy atmosphere that is (at times) stressful and confusing, one that pushes people outside of their comfort zones and dares them to have some fun. It's not for everyone, but it worked for me.

Kyle on October 24, 2008 at 4:45 PM said...


Managing Expectations

Anonymous said...

i'm going to go out on a limb and say that dance music is there for the dancing. true CC is less housey than juan but i just felt had by these two. the juan had their shit together and also had perhaps an unfair advantage of having a great drummer and james murphy at the board. the drummer for CC was shitty and boring (why have a live drummer that is shitty and boring and basically playing to the synth drum?). i actually left early which is really rare. that said, i had some really awesome okonomiyaki last night, so at least it wasn't a total wash. next time i want to see an electro band like CC or ladytron or whoever, i think i'll stay at home and imagine how awesome this kind of music would be if it had any kind of real emotion live. faux punk moves with the wine bottle and stage diving is played out. i can put on black eyeshadow and turn up the nintendo really loud and masturbate to my own dance moves at home but i wouldn't ever expect anyone to pay money for that.

Mimi on October 24, 2008 at 7:18 PM said...

I'm sorry that you had some personal issues with CC's live show, but like I said...it's about doing your homework and managing expectations so that you don't feel "had." I mean, seriously, what were you expecting? A put-together act? I knew going in that Alice would just be drunk, screaming, and pretty much acting a fool. Somehow, I got the idea that I may be into that, and I was...and I know they're not for everyone. But, it's not like I go to see Girl Talk with the expectation that he will mash up new shit on the spot or play live instruments. I know that he will play stuff from his laptop, he will strip, and I will have fun dancing/jumping around.

You say that dance music is there for the dancing... I was dancing. Maybe half the crowd was dancing. The other half looked pained/confused. At least you left, I applaud you on that. And you got some food on St. Mark's (hopefully from Yakitori/Oh Taisho).

Hiemann Lee on October 25, 2008 at 2:21 PM said...


It's an Atari 5200 sound chip, not Nintendo. Get it right shekki.

Anonymous said...

greatest live show i have ever seen. fuck the haters above. they stay home and wank it while my eyes fuck alice glass while their beat repeatedly fucks me.

crestere dorinta on February 15, 2010 at 9:21 AM said...

cool show :D

my brother was actually there :P

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