(4 / 5)
“J’ai mal au cœur” but their music enveloped that ‘Uncomfortably Numb’ feeling.
Like passing clouds in a timelapse video, there was something about Sunday night’s gig at The Pavilion at Far East Square in Singapore by emo and math rock band American Football that served as a gratifying respite from the long week that some of us might have had, and a reminder that life goes on…
Ambient textures coupled with clever layers of percussion, vocal colours and chords drove the night as fans, especially those standing in the first row sang out loud and engaged in the transcending dynamics of the night.
Many looked like a cross between indie fans and the heavy rock kind.
Starting the evening with ‘Silhouettes’, the percussive xylophone-like infused “prologue” followed by vocals and guitar nestled between flavoursome and subtle, twining around the vines of the music-aficionado’s heartstrings like a winding road.
Subtly strong ‘Every Wave to Ever Rise’ was an intrinsically intuitive piece whose one French sentence in its lyrics particularly stuck with me.
“J’ai mal au cœur, c’est la faute de l’amour…” – which loosely translates to “my heart aches, it’s cause of love” – referring to a “relationship”, physical or otherwise intangible…
The synchronicity of how they knew aptly to describe what was in my heart at that very moment…
Indeed, the juxtaposition between the band’s introspective and strongly subtle lyrics, instrumental layers (keyboard, percussion and even the trumpet during ‘The Summer Ends’) and tones combined, formed a baseline of minimalism meets explosion!
The Facebook page of the band describes them as “an enduring symbol of elusive emotional landscapes, where introspection can be as dramatic as confrontation”.
This is very much true, having not just heard their music that night, but having also experienced the colours exuded by the band, live.
‘The Summer Ends’ for instance, solo trumpet intro and purple gel lighting, was that one “elusive emotional landscape” piece with an introspection into itself that spoke louder than its words.
As fans sang out loud to encore piece, ‘Never Meant’, it was as though waves of emotions rolled over us that night.
I went to their gig not knowing what to expect…
I came out with a heart less heavy…and no longer ‘Uncomfortably Numb’…
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