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Centerstage Chicago Nightlife City Guide Arts Entertainment Chicago Illinois
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Japandroids Review

Monday Dec 17, 2012.     By Jeff D. Min
Centerstage Chicago Nightlife City Guide Arts

There is no breathing at a Japandroids show. You canít, itís not possible, and if it is youíre not paying attention. Thereís no air to fill the lungs, not enough space for that, just a monsoon that holds your head under an ocean of sound, unabashed and relentless. Brain King knows this as does David Prowse.

Their set up as always is minimal, and the amount of sound that is about to be unleashed has everyone on edge. They assume their positions, the Metro is packed, sold out show, the first riff cuts, an explosion occurs. The air coagulates, Japandroids is here.

photo: J. Min
photo: J. Min

Theyíve been touring for nearly four months straight, Chicago being the midpoint, and if there were any signs of wear and tear no one can tell. And itís staggering looking around, the sweaty faces, the eager smiles, a fan bodysurfs his way to the front, security reaches for him, but the wave takes him back into the abyss. He disappears. Security gives up.

The performance unfolds like a brief history lesson. The angst and raw nature of Post-Nothing is a reminder of the spontaneous nature of Japandroids music. It is a limitless well of energy that speaks to Japandroids frustrations as a band on the rise to nowhere, and it rocked the Metro. It stirred inspiration, and mauled doubt, providing a bridge to Celebration Rock.

photo: J. Min
photo: J. Min

The unbridled energy, keeps at a steady pace, builds to a crescendo, and holds. Between songs, King tunes his guitar; the silence is shrouded in reverberation. Even during the down times people are shook. The man to my right, and the woman to my left, stand on edge. Grinning, smiling, and then exploding in sheer joy, demanding more.

It's not just them. It's everyone. The music ingrained in their minds. Expanding and contracting, leaving the senses numbed. And just as quickly as they came, Japandroids is gone. On to the next like a hopeless tidal wave, aware that it only has so much time to wreak havoc before it returns home.

photo: J. Min
photo: J. Min


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