Dim Out + Louis Cole – Live Review

We haven’t heard of Dim Out before, because he’s an alien, and some people just don’t believe in aliens.

This is an experience you will never forget – and I mean this in a good way. Dim Out is an extraterrestrial planet. A place with colourful jungles and greyscale rainbows; with noisy storms that water neon deserts. A planet where vast ice-lands filled with caves echo digital sounds produced by funk-fruit fed animals. A place that has tribal rituals among cities that make conscious beings speak in tongues never to be spoken again. But don’t get confused, on this planet there is only one common language – and it sounds like no other.

Two people asked me about them, but I didn’t know them – no one did. At the bar, the bartender asks me the name of the band and doesn’t understand the “it” when I yell it back at her. I write it down and she doesn’t believe it, she still waits for answers, I show to her the name of the band on Google and she lets me go. I get back to my place just to find another guy asking me about them.

The crowd was amazed by the music of this unexpected support act. It was unsettling. Unsettling as a car crashing while the symphony plays, or as a flower stands in the middle of a battlefield. Unsettling as when your comfort zone is broken, as when the unexpected not only happens but remains. Dim Out finished, and we didn’t know what just happened. It’s not easy to understand a sound you’ve never heard before.

Louis Cole gets on stage after. Pyjama pants absorb the crowd into a different world, his room. We are in his house, in his comfortable music-making environment – with his drums, the keyboard we see in all his YouTube videos, and samples full of self-composed beats.

It’s not easy to understand a sound you’ve never heard before.

Louis Cole plays previously recorded tracks, and the funky bass courtesy of his fingers is recorded live and then looped. He sang, sat on the drums and demonstrated thousands of practice hours via amazingly tight solos, claiming “you know that’s what I do, music all day – I never leave my house”, before starting the cycle again. He repeated his own name – a lot . The visuals on the backdrop were, of course, Louis Cole being filmed on an VHS quality camera whilst doing Louis Cole things, always tinged with his very characteristic L.A humour.

Cole was awkwardly funny – if something went wrong, he would acknowledge this, then simply try it again. He didn’t worry about that and neither did the crowd, because once he got it right, there was no going back. Don’t get me wrong, it didn’t feel at all under-prepared – it was just as if we were experiencing how he feels at home, relaxed and safe; not a place to pretend, but the perfect place to be truly himself.

Once we’re around three-quarters of our way through the show, he starts reciting a poem from a paper taken out of the pocket of his pyjama pants. Intimate words on top of an ambient sample – which were perfectly timed together – created a moment that drove the audience to a sudden applause.

The singer from his previous band (Knower) was invited on stage, and was also an impressive piano player. They jammed as an encore twice, leaving the crowd satisfied. Louis Cole said goodbye and Louis Cole left, not before leaving his name engraved in a memory of a pleasant evening.

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