Review and Photos: The Escape Artist, Drop Electric, Caustic Casanova @ Rock and Roll Hotel 1.29.16
Photos by Miranda Hontz
For their album release show on Friday, The Escape Artist paired with three other D.C. acts at Rock and Roll Hotel. Unfortunately I missed Boon but was able to catch openers Drop Electric and Caustic Casanova. The venue was tallying that night, something that I haven’t experienced there before–no matter which band the crowd was there to see, the room was filled start to finish.
Caustic Casanova–the three-piece “eclectic, heavy space rock” group’s soundcheck was a show all in itself. The bassist, guitarist and drummer tested just how far they could push their noise-levels by shouting delicious breakfast items into the mic as loud as humanly possible. Their performance moved through ebbs and flows of different soundscapes, keeping their set fresh and interesting as it went along.
The room went black and filled with smoke as Drop Electric began playing. I’d heard how incredible Drop Electric is live, and after seeing them for myself, it’s clear why the six-piece post-rock band has gained such a notable reputation.
The band’s talent shone through as they experimented with sound, depth and textures with complete control. As Drop Electric moved through their set, musicians traded off guitars, bass, keys, drums, bongos and tambourines. Anya Mizani opened the set playing keys, but soon moved to the guitar, where she also took over lead vocals. She was able to play and sing with incredible range. Halfway through their set, Drop Electric delivered a daring and mesmerizing cover of Radiohead’s “Weird Fishes / Arpeggi.” Their music acts like a spiritual guide for your soul, leading you into the heart of your feelings, walking you through them, and making sure you reach the end of your journey whole.
Singer Wanda Perkins led The Escape Artist through a dreamy, mellow set. Her soft voice was the perfect juxtaposition for the post-rock/shoegaze sound the band created.
The Escape Artist opened with heavy instrumentals, which transformed into something delicate and haunting as Perkins added her vocals. Before the set came to a close, Perkins let us know Constellations took four years to complete, and almost didn’t come out. It would have been a shame if we never got to experience something so beautiful.