Dan Deacon at Scrummage University

I got to Scrummage just after 10pm to find a packed performance space full of living, breathing bodies–some sweating, some really sweating–jumping and gyrating to the last few moments of Benny Stoofy‘s set, which I was pretty bummed and baffled to miss since shows at Scrummage rarely start this early. But shows at Scrummage rarely reach beyond legal room capacity either. At least not since Dan Deacon‘s last show.

This time around, Deacon presented Ultimate Reality, a joyous, hyperactive electronic symphony set to a film by collaborator Jimmy Joe Roche that slices and dices, then splices and splashes with effulgent neon colorings the myriad films of the Governator, Arnie Schwarzenegger.



The film’s ridiculous and awesome narrative was delivered through short segues of text against a red backdrop on the big screen, yawped to the audience by some guy up front. And Deacon had the great idea of bringing two drummers to provide real beats instead of relying on a machine–the live, adrenaline-rocketing thump of a kick mallet against a bass drum head will always outdo an electronic pulse from a loudspeaker.

But more important than what Deacon does is what Deacon can make you do, make you feel. He’s able to induce the kind of exhilarating, one-with-everything dance party that makes you happily give up your personal space to give yourself up amongst a group of strangers, swapping sweat.

And that’s just what we did.







(Thanks to photographer Kristen Ventura for the pics.)

2 Comments so far

  1. Matt (unregistered) on January 29th, 2008 @ 1:51 pm

    Hey Scott, so sorry I missed the show. I got tied up in Ann Arbor for the day. I’ve not yet been to scrummage, but now I am positive I need to get there. Looks like it was awesome.

  2. Mollika* (unregistered) on January 31st, 2008 @ 9:19 am

    Matt, it was awesome. It was frightening to realize that Terminator 2 and Kindergarten Cop were my two favourite Arnold movies. Junior – where Arnold is impregnated – is one that I could have done without being reminded of. Scott, great post. Kristen, great pictures. Thank you Scrummage for yet another memorable night.

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