During the hours of 10:30pm to around midnight on Friday, June 3, 2016, Digitalism played at the El Rey Theatre, and gave the people what they wanted. Suffice it to say, there was no shortage of dancing bodies heating up the venue.
Designated as the Los Angeles Historic-Cultural Monument No. 520 in 1991, the El Rey Theatre presented the perfect atmosphere for this show. Its intimate feel gives people the ability to navigate the floor without feeling like you're having to trek through the wilderness for years before finding a sufficient space to let those dance moves flow. Unlike most other venues, getting to the front row is far from daunting, giving patrons an incredible opportunity to get up close and personal with the artists. On this particular occasion, Digitalism brought the energy and actively engaged with the crowd throughout the show. Regardless of where you were situated in the venue, it felt and sounded like you were front and center.
Draped in front of Digitalism were two illuminated sheets, making for a very Bowie-esque feel and a unique light display. They wasted no time bringing out the bangers and getting the dance party started. It has been awhile since Digitalism released a full length album (around five years) but it's very clear that they have not missed a beat. Their new album, Mirage, got considerable play on Friday night and certainly lives up to the high standards the band has set for themselves. It is bookended with two incredible jams, 'Arena' and 'Blink', which, like many of their other songs, sounded amazing live.
Definitely one of the more subtle aspects of the show was the old-school microphone that Jence had on stage. Reverberating off the acoustics in the El Rey, his voice was clear and crisp. It's not very often where a band's live performance can capture, or exceed, the sound that is present on an album. Digitalism's show on Friday night was the exception: every single song they played sounded amazing.
Dancing to new track is always a blast but Digitalism knew what their fans wanted. Peppered throughout the set were the fire jams that introduced many people (myself included) to the band: 'Wolves', 'Pogo', 'Blit'z and 'Circles'. To call the dance floor during these songs incendiary would be a conservative assessment. It essentially felt as if all the fans had organized and rehearsed a fully choreographed routine to each song. Everyone was singing, everyone was dancing, and everyone left it all out on floor.
Despite having given their fans an incredible show, the people wanted more and Digitalism happily obliged. The expectation is usually that there will be a nice one-song encore. Not so on this instance. Digitalism came out and gave the people three more to close out their set. Sadly, as the great Robert Frost once wrote, "Nothing gold can stay" and the show ultimately had to end. Despite that, not a single person walked out of the El Rey without a smile on their face.
Do you like to dance? Do you like to sing? Then do yourself a favor and go see Digitalism when they come to your town. You're welcome.