By Caleb Oldham
David Byrne has talked about how the architecture of a venue influences the music that fills it. Gothic cathedrals, for example, call for different sounds than an underground rat cellar.
Brooklyln Bazaar is a weird venue. It's a Williamsburg playground decked out with a flea market, an arcade, food stands, a mini putt-putt course and a concert hall. It was all a bit overstimulating so when I went to go see Rat King last night, instead of focusing on what Byrne might have to say about the architectural aspect of space, I couldn't help but observe the space between the spectators themselves and how it developed throughout the show.
A group called 86 started off the night with some haunted beats over distorted guitar. Deep, dark bass with some warped vocals made for a set that turned the crowd into head nodding, introspective islands. Even when people were getting into it they made room to dance it out.
Yung Gutted turned the crowd into one wave, casting a bassy warbly dream net over the venue, but with trap beats and a golden flows of rhymes.
Then Show Me The Body came on.
Show Me The Body's music is as direct and powerful as their name is. It stares you in the face and commands you with a rhythm that rips you apart. Their energetic frontman Cashwan shreded his distorted banjo while barking over a hard snare and funky bass and the crowd got violent. Great moshing all around.
With the space between spectators broken and the violence of the music transferred into heavy shoves and pogoing, Rat King took the stage at around 12:30. The crowd showed their love for a group that seemed at home on a NYC stage. By the end most of the front row had joined the band members on stage and everyone blended into a bouncing, chanting blob.
Rat King erased the space between artist and witness, yelled "Rat!", and ended the show encore-less.