Emancipator Rifftop Tent, Victoria BC, September 20

Emancipator Rifftop Tent, Victoria BC, September 20
Photo: Kim Jay
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Emancipator's set at the Rifftop Tent suffered some sound issues right from the start, struggling to find a balance after a glitchy and unusually quiet start. Once he found his footing though, Emancipator put on a technically sound set worthy of applause. The accompanying violin, played by classical violinist Ilya Goldberg, added an immense richness only live instrumentation can contribute.
 
Goldberg bowed and plucked through the majority of the tracks in the set, which certainly added to the performance, though the stage presence of both parties was significantly lacking. A dreamy, synth-pop interpretation of MGMT's "Kids" definitely stood out, but for nearly an hour the pair onstage stood motionless, a barrier of laptops and turntables separating them from the crowd, barely speaking or engaging. What the performance lacked was personality.