the loud bassoon concert scene

Röyksopp @ Metro, Chicago, USA
13 March 2003

Norway's chillybeat geniuses Röyksopp blew through town stopping at Metro on a curiously underpopulated Thursday night to drop their beautiful thump with much savoir faire. After a surprisingly wonderful meal at Raw Bar, my companion and I managed to score a couple of tix for below face value – too bad that's the most illicit thing I'll buy on the street anymore.

If you've heard Melody A.M., you didn't miss much – musically, at least – but it was a bit of a thrill seeing it all come alive on stage, even if the actual performance was mostly sequenced.

I'd heard that they play with a full band, and thought it would have been an amazing spectacle to see this gorgeous, haunting, deeply grooving music recreated by humans, but in fact, it was just the two Röyksopp fellows and a bass player. They played from behind an arsenal of Korg MS20s and vocoders, plus the almighty Roland Octapad faux-drum kit (with real cymbals).

You could tell they fucking love their music. And you couldn't help but join the lovefest. Infectious, intelligent, melodic – dance music for the headphone set, as was obvious from the crowd, who by and large did not look like they get out much.

However, several songs (and a few drinks) in, at least some of us were shaking our tailfeathers. My fave track, "Röyksopp's Night Out," was like the second song played, and that made me happy. I hate having to wait for my favorite tracks.

Review by Abel Packaday