Chicks On Speed are a DIY band synthesizing electro-clash, fashion, collage art with a slight punk sensibility. Just like their music, their shows are usually chaotic, fun and lively and their second time here in KL (thanks to Monsoon Records) was no different. What was interesting this time aroundâ€”besides the show at Bedroomâ€”was the ‘Don’t Art Fashion Music’ lecture given by them a day earlier.
Text Xes Xes Loveseat
The talk was given at the new funky furniture gallery Pieces a few doors down the road from No Black Tie and Palate Palette. It was a discourse on the idea of everyday noise and art. Particularly it looked into the human body and common objects as a source of sound and they dissected some of their wearable music and gave clear ideas on how they were built. Afterwards, the audience were treated to a short demonstration and were themselves allowed to try out some of their Objekt Instruments that included wireless high-heeled shoe guitars and a cigar-box theremin.
The Donn and yours truly opened to a good turnout for a weekday before Chicks On Speed appeared with their customary colourful patchwork outfits. The show lasted an hour that included all their familiar hits, ‘Fashion Rules’, ‘We Don’t Play Guitars’, ‘Kaltes Klares Wasser’, ‘Wordy Rappinghood’ plus a couple from their last album released 2 years back.
On display were all their wearable musical instrument scattered on the makeshift stage. To get all-geeky on you, they were performing from a mobile setup, with sounds routed from an Ipad, effect pedals and small synthesizers to accompany their vocals. Jimmy, the ex-drummer for local Chinese prog rock terrorists, Nao, stepped in last minute to replace COS’ tour-drummer who couldn’t make it. It worked well and Jimmy added more power to their raw sounding electro-ness.
Although it’s quite clear that their focus is more on avant garde these days, they haven’t lost any of their charm and stage presence. If there was one thing you’d learn from the show, it was to know that the so-called electroclash sound still rocks! And if there was one nag it’d be that they didn’t put on their Lady Gaga-esque synthesizer heels.
Chicks On Speed were buzzing at Bedroom on Wednesday 6 April 2011. Fun and pictures collide at our gallery.