Robert DeLong @ Amoeba Music, Hollywood 2/5/13
When we saw Robert DeLong less than a year ago at the 2012 Silver Lake Jubilee, he was a local artist playing an early time slot, an electronic standout in a sea of jangly alt rock. Since then, he’s blown up quite a bit, garnering airplay on KROQ’s Locals Only, a spot at Coachella 2013, and being named one of Mtv’s Artists to Watch. On the release of his excellent new album, Just Movement, DeLong earned a prime opportunity to show off his skills at Hollywood’s venerable Amoeba Music, and he didn’t disappoint.
DeLong took the stage right at 7pm, starting things off with his album’s opening title track, “Just Movement.” He created the beat by looping samples of himself on vocals, tambourine, and shaker — a tricky feat he would continue throughout his set.
During his hit single, “Global Concepts,” DeLong tweaked his voice with a bit of auto-tune, adding an interesting new wrinkle to a song that his fans already knew the words to. He put his drum set to good use during “Concepts,” as well, thrashing out beats that had fans inside the massive record store dancing into the back aisles.
DeLong pounded out the high-pitched lead melody of “Happy” on a video game controller. He again accompanied himself on drums, this time being so worked up that he didn’t even bother sitting down. Most of his tracks mixed directly into each other, but the times he did have a definite gap between songs, the audience, including face-painted club kids, gave him thunderous applause.
In addition to the strength of his well-crafted songs, a big part of DeLong’s appeal is the energy he puts into being a one-man rave onstage. Throughout his set, DeLong went everywhere he could on Amoeba’s tiny stage, playing drums and various percussion instruments in addition to singing, pounding a midi board, a laptop, and even a Wiimote. Towards the end of his set, it felt like he might have lost a tiny bit of momentum by staying on the drum kit for a hair too long, but that owes more to the venue than any fault of his music. In a club, or even at an outdoor street festival, he’s a great showman. It feels like Robert DeLong is right on the cusp of hitting the big time, and this hour-long set proved that he’s more than ready for it.
Check out all the awesome photos HERE.