Grimes @ Paradise Rock Club 9.26.12
by Allison Walker (Journalism/Cinema Studies), published October 6th 2012
photos by Christina Spleen (Computer Science)
After Grimes’ concert at Paradise Rock Club she tweeted, ‘I had no idea Boston was so crazy.’ Well, neither did I. I was briefly chased around the perimeter of the cramped venue by a sweaty man with dreads, pushed to my knees after the mosh pit tilted a little too much to the right and was unwillingly grinded on by a girl with pig tails and an affinity for the running man. However, amidst all of these strange events throughout the show, I still managed to appreciate the undeniable talents of Claire Boucher.
Right from the start I felt like I was a passenger on an eclectic space odyssey. The singer entered the stage behind the opener, Myths–a duo draped in plastic cloaks that covered bodysuits printed with skeletal outlines. The two would accompany Grimes with vocals, synthesizers and dancing for the rest of her set.
The singer opened with the ethereal and romantic track, “Symphonia IX,” during which she softly chanted, “My wait is you,” over twinkling synthesizers and harmonizing back up vocals. The song took a dark, twisting transition into, “Vanessa,” which set the grounds for the crowd’s incessant jumping and clawing at the stage.
“Circumambient” put alternative pop on grand display before the opening beats of hit song, “Oblivion,” forced the crowd into an uncontrollable and somewhat violent dance party. If you closed your eyes, it was almost as if the shirtless men from the song’s notorious music video were shoving you around in that mysterious locker room. “Be a Body” and the haunting melody of “Nightmusic” followed.
After “Genesis” ended, the Paradise was engulfed in such applause that the already bashful Grimes became visibly more modest and truly appreciative of the crowd’s affection. As the excitement built, she announced that she’d skip the whole encore tradition bullshit and instead of leaving the stage- she’d just play. The last song and most memorable of the set was “Phone Sex”, a Blood Diamonds collaboration. This pop song spiked with Caribbean flavor had a build up that propelled the crowd into a bouncing marathon. The venue whaled along with the singer, “Please, daddy take me home.” (Which, by the way, was a contradictory statement to the vibe the crowd was giving off.) Our voyage through space ended with the final lines of the song “Hey daddy, it’s too soon/I’m living on the moon.”