by Dominic Yamarone
Earlier this year RAC (a.k.a. Remix Artists Collective) released their second album of original music, Ego. This time around, they featured vocalists such as Rivers Cuomo of Weezer, Rostam, K. Flay, and Joywave. Their sound is a unique blend of rock, pop, and electronic music that somehow manages to be both musically complex and still extremely catchy. On October 4th, they played at the Paradise Rock Club in Allston with opener LPX.
LPX, formerly the frontwoman of MS MR, opened the show with a killer set. Onstage, she had amazing energy and was all smiles, she was able to connect with the crowd in a way that very few openers do. She did not hold back and had no reservations about taking the spotlights early on. Her singing was spectacular, showcasing both her skill and confidence as a performer. She played singles that she had released earlier this year, like “Tremble”, “Tightrope”, and “Better”. She also filled her set with some unreleased songs and a fantastic cover of “Deceptacon” by Le Tigre.
While her recorded music has more of an electronic sound, her band was consistently able to recreate or reimagine these songs without sacrificing the spontaneity of a live performance. I was initially shocked at the lack of a synth or keyboard on stage, but they were more than able to create all the sounds they needed with a few effects pedals and some very skillful musicians. With the band dancing and jamming together onstage, it was clear they were all having a great time, and the feeling was infectious and got the crowd dancing along with her songs. She was incredibly engaged with the audience, saying that her set was about getting to know each other. She was clearly very excited to be performing as a solo artist, and for the first time in Boston. With new music on the horizon, she is an artist to keep an eye on.
RAC was quick to follow up with a set full of some of the more popular songs from their expansive collection. Originally known for remixing indie rock songs and video game music into dance pop masterpieces, their set was almost entirely their original music. While these songs are all recorded with vocals from guest artists, RAC performed them with only their touring band. The unfortunate result of this was a feeling that they were almost more of an RAC cover band. The music was spot on performance wise, but each song felt a little off. The fact that they were playing along to a controlled synth with some of the more complex aspects of their songs only added to that effect. Most of their recorded music uses a mix of drum kits and electronic drums but at the show, you could only hear the steady notes of the live drum kit. Again, this made the songs feel slightly unfamiliar.
All that aside, RAC’s performance was extremely fun to watch. Truly a collective, they switched off lead singers and instruments throughout the set. Their musical acrobatics were as fun to follow as the songs themselves. While RAC is the brainchild of André Allen Anjos, who played amazing lead guitar on every song, he performs with frequent collaborators, Karl Kling, Pink Feathers, and Troupe Gammage of Austin band, SPEAK. Each of these performers have done songs with RAC that they got to perform live. They performed their songs, “Repeating Motion”, “It’s a Shame”, and “One House” respectively. They also performed hits like “This Song”, “Hollywood”, and “Ready for It”. My personal favorite was the song “Unusual” where each vocalist sang a verse, providing a variety rarely seen on the album. Every song they played was very well done, but always seemed to be chasing the meticulous perfection of the albums. For the encore, they left the crowd with a beautiful rendition of “Heavy” and finished with their hit song, “Let Go”.