In The Flesh

Le Tigre and Electrelane
St. Andrew’s Hall
Aug. 7

Sure, Le Tigre preach to the choir — so what? In today’s depressingly conservative climate, the choir could definitely use some preaching. So it’s not surprising that the political, electro-punk party thrown by the New York City trio — Johanna Fateman, former Bikini Kill shouter Kathleen Hanna and JD Samson — turned St. Andy’s into a sea of aerobicizing ladies, fags and sympathizers of all ages. Because really, where else can you cut a rug to songs that big-up butch dykes and feminists, shout down Dubya, and make the fight for equal rights sound like a dance-floor free-for-all? From the moment they opened with “On the Verge,” off last fall’s This Island, to the encore of “Deceptacon,” Le Tigre — whose matching outfits, synchronized dances and tight-knit camaraderie nodded to girl groups of yore — showered mad love on an audience used to being ignored and pushed to the margins.

Hopefully Le Tigre’s devotees didn’t expect similar inclusiveness from openers Electrelane. Forgoing the more accessible material from 2004’s brilliant The Power Out for a largely instrumental set culled from their recent Axes, the arty British quartet left much of the audience looking befuddled and bored. And while Electrelane needn’t have pandered to crowd expectations with their droning, intricately crafted post-punk, it was hard not to think they were going out of their way to be difficult. They ditched anything resembling a chorus, ignored the crowd and barely utilized singer-keyboardist Verity Susman’s engaging, woman-on-the-verge vocals. —Jimmy Draper

Jimmy Draper writes about music for Metro Times. Send comments to [email protected]
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