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On Thursday June 16 I went to the Crocodile to see Stripmall Architecture, with Fading Collection headlining and Sex Panther opening. 

I wasn't expecting a pair of rappers to be opening this show, but that's what I got with Sex Panther. One problem I often have with this style of rap is that the music seems detached from the rapping—not that they could use just anything, but still, there seems to be little linking the two elements together. And I think that's why it tends to bore me, the monotonous rap isn't engaging and too often the music isn't either. I did like when they brought out a guest singer to drop some diva vocals in the chorus, but overall they just weren't for me.

I last saw Stripmall Architecture in November 2008, when they were newly forming themselves out of the Coseblooms' previous project Halou, and so were still playing music they'd created as Halou. I hadn't really kept up with their development since, and so all of the music was basically new to me. What they played at this show seemed to be mostly straightforward rock, with little if any of the dreampop or triphop influence and style of Halou. It was good, but nothing jumped out to me as particularly notable, and I missed the earlier mix of musical styles and experimental edge. However, I may find more of that when I listen to their two albums which I finally picked up—2009's We Were Flying Kites and this year's Feathersongs for Factory Girls—and in any case I have no doubt they will continue to do interesting things in the future.

I didn't really take any notes about Fading Collection's set. They played a mix of some of their stronger older songs and some songs from last year's EP Attakk, and also what seemed to be a cover of the Eurythmics' "Sweet Dreams (Are Made of This)", except I only recognized the chorus and the verses seemed to be different. I'm curious what's happening with the next album (or two) that they were working on as far back as 2008 (at the same show when I saw Stripmall Architecture); they made no mention of it, and after all this time I wonder whether they might have dumped what they'd done so far to start over. In the meanwhile, it's good to see them out playing shows still.

I have a small set of photos from this show up on Flickr.


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The List: June 2011

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