Livetronica Stalwarts Bring Festival Atmosphere to the Concrete Jungle of Fort Lauderdale – Review of the show at Culture Room (Ft. Lauderdale)
If you live in South Florida, it’s hard to find the time to get away for an authentic camping festival experience. All the good ones tend to be a once a year type deals, with a minimum of an 8 hour drive to get to the closest ones in Live Oak, and at least another 5 to get to anything out of state (the recently established Okeechobee Music Festival notwithstanding). And good luck to ya if you’re trying to experience these events any time outside of the summer festival season, because you will have to look far and wide for something to cater to your specific tastes in the wintertime. Thankfully, the heavyweight combination of powerhouse DJ PhuturePrimitive and noted jamtronica band Papadosio, as well as genre-fusing newcomers Echo Maestro delivered the festival atmosphere right to Ft. Lauderdale, transforming the intimate performance space of the Culture Room into a scene more commonly found at Bonnaroo.
Crammed into the tiny outdoor patio area was a miniature “shakedown street”, a small bazaar filled with custom made jewelry, paintings by local artists (as well as live paintings done right in front of your eyes), and of course, band merchandise. Even thought this was a late show, the crowd took their time coming, but once the clock hit nine a steady stream of people began to pour into the show.
The first group to take the stage were Georgia natives Echo Maestro. Hailing from Atlanta, the three-piece group performed a mind-melting blend of jams that fit in with the “jamtronica” mood but with their own unique twist. Utilizing live percussion combined with rapping, as well as mixing together quite a few genres, the group warmed the crowd up quite well, and I could tell a lot of people left the show that night with a new band on their radar. After playing for about a hour, the group departed from the stage to mingle with the crowd and give fans a chance to connect with the group.
PhuturePrimitive took the helm after a short break, and by this point it was already impossible for most people to get from one end of the club to another. It was rare to see the small club this packed, but fans definitely showed up in force to see this performance. A one man act, PhuturePrimitive played an eclectic mix of psy-trance mixed with more modern, bass-er music such as dubstep, flanked by a set of five screens projecting psychedelic visuals behind him as he played. After completing his set, he departed from the stage to let the techs set up for the next band.
After a short but agonizing wait for the main event to get ready, Papadosio finally took to the stage just a few minutes shy of midnight. Definitely the latest show I’ve ever been to at the Culture Room, the crowd didn’t seem to mind as they exploded into fervor as the band took the stage. A five-piece group hailing from North Carolina, the quintet specializes in mixing together a blend of traditional “jam band” music with more modern accouterments more commonly seen in electronic music, the group exploded onto the stage with some jams from their latest album Pattern Integrities. Once again backed up by a professional light show and psychedelic visuals projected into the screen behind them, the band played a stunning set going well past 1 AM to much adoration from the tune-hungry audience. Here’s hoping they come back to the Culture Room sometime show, as the intimate nature of the venue was perfect for seeing the group.