Published Oct 05, 2010Cleveland, OH's Emeralds have been prodigiously releasing music since their inception in 2006. In that time, a growing cult fan base has risen around the mysterious trio, thanks to dozens of releases on damn near every experimental underground label, not to mention all those put out by the band's myriad side-projects and solo efforts. Each successive year has brought the group increased attention, and 2010 has become their banner year, with their much-heralded two-LP set on Editions Mego label, Does It Look Like I'm Here?, garnering universally rave reviews all the way from the blogs to major institutions like the BBC.
Emeralds current tour with Caribou should increase the profile of the group even more so. The group wasted no time when they hit the stage, launching right into the lengthy "Genetic" off Does It Look Like I'm Here? The result was an onslaught of arpeggiating synths, dreamy keyboards and soaring guitar lines, which grew into a feverish intensity over the song's ten-minute-plus duration. Eventually, Emeralds wound it back down and the group settled into a noisy Kraut workout that throbbed and twinkled, casting a hypnotic spell on the sold-out crowd.
Though Caribou and Emeralds must share some similar influences — particularly the repetitive nature of Krautrock — Emeralds are more interested in exploring the cerebral aspect, while Caribou has funnelled these traits into his unique, outward take on pop music. Drawing mainly from the recent Swim album, Dan Snaith and his trio of live players charged through the set, continuously swapping instruments and whipping the crowd into a frothing frenzy with their extended dance-fuelled renditions of the Polaris-nominated album. The shimmering and kaleidoscopic imagery displayed behind and on the bands only added to the intoxicating night of psychedelic journeys.