April 09, 2010 Concert Review | Detroit, MI | The Fillmore

Contributing Writer / Photographer : Rashon A. Massey [ 15sec FAME Blog ]

Thanks to AngelaOohLahLah at YouTube for the video usage.

If Lorin cut his hair, would the performances still be the same?  This question is one of the many leftover remnants from the Detroit, April 9 Bassnectar show lingering in my body.

After surviving a wrestle with Bassnectar’s live music experience, you stand drenched in your own sweet sweat of accomplishment, reading lips because your ears ring from the deafening decibels of life that were hurled at you from stacked, towering speakers.  You’re heavily-breathing comfortably in those moments, standing poised, locking eyes and smiles with other Bass Heads; moreover, each twinkling, dilated pupil you come across burns with fire set ablaze from the last song continuing in heartbeats knocking the walls of their chest.  Yes, that bleeding thump echo’s in your body just as the muffled, distorted sounds of chatter, screams and yelps paint the diming colors of the stage lights being shut down one by one.   Eventually, your ear cells stop crying, you don’t feel like you’ve ran a marathon and the rhythm of your own drum is restored in the cavity of your being that Lorin held for so long.


The night began with a solid low banger set from DJ Vadim who ushered the black light sensitive glow apparel of the Ragers to the front of the stage.   Midway through his set, a fog machine began clouding the Fillmore and the dreamy atmosphere continued all the way through a smoking romp by the following act, MAJOR LAZER.  A dazzling light show in splendor, MAJOR LAZER raised the bar for a dance-heavy night, and almost effortless and seamlessly during their last loops, the Bassnectar crew assembled Lorin’s mad scientist lab table of equipment.  With a charming grin and toss of his signature dark hair, Lorin went to work.

Constantly mixing liquids from beakers, Lorin pours a sampling of old music and experiences with a fresh batch of sound he is conjuring on the spot just for you, the city and the night. You trust whatever elixir and serum he is dishing out, sticking out your tongue for his pipette to savor each dropping note of oozing, whomp soaked bass, excited for them to penetrate your internal system.  Regardless if you’re familiar with his music or not, you’re moving with your surrounding family as a pulsating, unison organism, each of his exhalations becoming your oxygen.   You’re breathing with Lorin and you love it.  The best part, he wouldn’t have it any other way.

Watching Lorin glide, hop and jig about his workstation is probably like watching Cousin It of the Addams Family mixing some crazy, spellbinding potion.  Similar in the fashion in which his music holds the audience entranced, Lorin’s hair hypnotizes, drawing you closer to his hauntingly creepy stage aesthetics.  Even for the kids in the top balcony, the serpenticious movements of his black locks are more daunting and intriguing than the snakes of Medusas head.  Slowly throughout the course of the night, the bucket of moisture accumulates and binds the hair, creating a visual flag waving in the energy radiating from his body.  I am still astonished the man can even see what he is doing, but this go-around on the carousel allowed me to witness the magic close up.

Being invited to photograph alongside the talent on stage, I observed him communicate in whispers and simple hand gestures with his managing and tour team.  A cupped hand and flick of the wrist meant more water.  Pointing down at his computer meant technical assistance was needed.  Best of all, amidst the PEAK of the show, Lorin points to that ‘one guy’ in the audience who has spun so hard he’s lost in a stagelight and his own thoughts.  The Bassnectar crew immediately grabs water from backstage and jumps in the photo pit, talking to the guy while keeping him hydrated to make sure he was okay.  A pretty remarkable feat to watch considering his face remained buried in the sound experiments taking place on stage.

Detroit doesn’t dance.  Detroit doesn’t party.  Detriot fights, howls and throws down, demanding musicians bring their best.  The city challenges an artist to ‘bring it’ in Motown, taunting them to prove themselves worthy of ticket sales, fan signs and the merch on their backs.  This might be the reason behind the venue extending his performance time until 2 a.m., and why even on his 5th return to the city, his computer still crashes.  Yup, that’s a 5 for 5 record the D holds with Lorin.

For me, the best parts were the moments of triumph where we got a glimpse of the person behind the hair.  Whether it was the filler audience exchange while the crew repaired the computer crash fiasco, or him reading an audience so well he could signal that one of us needed some special attention, Lorin’s excitement to share in a moment of life with a room of people leaves me captivated.  As the room lights were restored and security personnel cleared the theater, Lorin sat on the front of the stage taking pictures, distributing stickers and signing tickets, completing the ultimate show experience for many fans.

I survive this Bassnectar show with a profound realization that his music wakes me up and reminds me I’m alive.  A reminder that we are all in this together, and what is stronger than the crazy things that may be happening in our personal lives is the need to quench our thirst for living.  A human need to stop and appreciate the extraordinary machine our body is…

…A true hunger to keep hunting for the next whomptacular bass note.

One Response to “BASS In 3-D | BASSNECTAR”

Leave a Reply