Saturday, October 24, 2009

review: nick curly at spybar

i think i'm gonna try to make it a habit to post up some reviews of the events i attend around chicago, so i'll start by discussing the near-epic fail that was nick curly's set at spybar a few nights ago.

it was raining pretty hard thursday night, so i figured this would keep the typical club plastic away and bring out the loyal people who were genuinely enthusiastic about the music. well, it almost worked like that: arriving after 1am after getting off work, i found spybar as empty as i've ever seen it (and i only go there if the music warrants it). maybe that's why i ended up getting in for free... although i was supposed to be on the free-all-night RSVP list after confirming the "complimentary admission" with the promoter via email, my name wasn't on the list. luckily i noticed a friend was listed (if you can, always check the list with your own eyes), and had a +1; although the door guy tried to lie about her not being on the list, we ultimately got in for free.

lack of professionalism in both promoter and door guy aside, inside the dance floor was thinly populated, only filling up briefly because of a few 'VIP' parties or whatever. nick curly got on stage around 1:45am and his initial momentum had me excited that he'd throw down a set of his trademark deep-house. however, the dance floor started to clear early, leaving it almost empty by 2:30, when curly should have been deep in the groove. at about this point i felt he was basically giving up: even though he was trying to stay active and dance-y up in the booth and was playing good tracks heavy on his organic, percussive style, i just wasn't impressed by the overall dynamics.

spybar has a 4am curfew on fridays, and while i've seen some dj's - such as magda a few months ago - push the crowd for as long as possible up close to closing time, curly called it quits and the lights came on barely after 3:15am. this night had plenty of potential: i believe this was his chicago debut, and upon arrival i had hoped that a thin crowd would coax a riskier, 'weirder' set out of him, but the lack of energy definitely affected the quality of his performance. my friends and i left disappointed, but we showed as much appreciation to our german visitor as we could. hopefully, nick curly comes back to chicago, and plays a better venue with a bigger crowd.

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