REVIEW: The Crytal Method at The Vogue 2/24/12

People (lots of them) came early to The Vogue on Friday to make sure they didn’t miss a second of The Crystal Method. Local EDM expert and DJ Rudy Kizer did a great job of keeping the growing anticipation and anxiousness at bay with tunes too good to stand still. Finally, a little after midnight, the headlining duo appeared on stage and began an epic two-and-one-half hour long musical trek.

Indy’s dance music enthusiasts came out in hordes, bringing the same kind of energy not felt at an EDM show at The Vogue since Bassnectar sold out the venue in April of 2010. It was a pleasing mix of hardcore, long-time fans and new generation followers. While the old skool Crystal Method fanatics instantly recognized the handful of original tracks that were played throughout the night, the n00bs were pleased to dance to never-ending, high energy electro beats (and the occasional familiar rock’n’roll sample).

Furthermore, there were multiple blasts of confetti, a recurring stream of fog, a badass neon green laser that projected fun images of a pair of dancing men, showers of glow sticks, and even pyrotechnics that left the tangy, metallic scent of gunpowder lingering in the air. There was a slight drop in attendance levels an hour into the set, but that just meant more room for dancing on the floor. The half-hearted went home just as the faithful found their second wind.

The Vogue, packed for The Crystal Method

As I slowly moved in and got progressively closer and closer, I was able to watch Ken Jordan and Scott Kirkland work their magic in tandem. I could see emotion in the duo’s eyes as they looked into the audience and we responded to their music with cheers of joy and vigorous dancing. As the show neared its end and Jordan manned the decks, Kirkland pulled out his iPad to snap photos, live tweet, and write a quick message to us that he displayed using a scrolling marquee app. Among his thanks and appreciation, Kirkland ended by describing his time spent with Indy as “mazebags”.

Kirkland took his final turn at the controls and ended with The Crystal Method’s take on “War Pigs”. He and Jordan each hopped to the edge of the stage to shake hands and show their gratitude. They thanked us over the microphone and expressed astonishment with the Indy EDM scene. Perhaps the coolest moment of the night (and certainly the most humbling) was when Kirkland hopped off the stage and joined the audience on the floor. Equally as impressive was the respectful manner in which the crowd handled the sudden change of circumstances. Rather than swarming, everyone continued to dance as if they weren’t getting down next to one of the biggest legends in electronic dance music.

It was especially cool for me to see The Crystal Method so up-close-and-personal after gaining insight into their creative process by watching Re:Generation at the movie theater just 24 hours prior wherein the duo worked with Martha Reeves and the Funk Brothers to produce a modern dance track made up of classic elements of R&B. While waiting for the movie to begin, I listened as two local DJ’s gushed over their past experiences and run-ins with The Crystal Method, leading me to conclude they’re some of the most down to earth guys in the scene. Their response to Indianapolis proves my deductions are correct.

“This I can say with certainty: Indy brought its ‘A’ game tonight,” Kizer said in a facebook post just hours after the show concluded. He makes a great point in that the force behind our resurging local EDM scene is not just about having the right people in place to bring the big names to town. It’s also about the people who support those organizations that are bringing the big names to town. So, to those who bought a ticket, stayed to the end, and danced their asses off the entire time: thank you for contributing to such an amazing night.

And to The Crystal Method: thanks for being so personable, for sharing your talent with us, and for being absolutely mazebags yourselves. Please come back to our city soon!