YACHT - The Echoplex - December 8, 2012
When YACHT embarked on its Shangri-La Tour this past winter/spring, it was odd and borderline insulting that the synth-pop duo did not pass through Southern California (especially since the band calls Los Angeles home) but turns out Jona Bechtolt and Claire L. Evans had something special planned for the City of Angels.
Saturday night marked the band's tenth birthday, and they decided to hold the celebratory show at The Echoplex. Though any YACHT performance is extravagant, Bechtolt and Evans promised this would be even more special, and they were right. The set began with Bechtolt creeping onto the stage by himself. His coy act quickly faded as computer beats led him through selections off older records from back when YACHT was a one-man-band. He slid across the stage and flamboyantly gyrated as he sang. After the first song, the singer jumped into the crowd and sprawled across his fans, who graciously made sure he did not fall. After a few solo songs, Evans appeared on stage, along with Rob "Bobby Birdman" Kieswetter on bass and Jeffrey "Jerusalem" Brodsky on drums.
As a quartet, the band focused on selections from 2009's See Mystery Lights and 2011's Shangri-La, while sprinkling some rarer tracks from their discography into the set list. Bechtolt kept his energy up during the entire 90-minute set and Evans kept up with her own graceful dance moves. Their chemistry was outstanding as they read each other and synchronized every move. This energy translated into the audience, and everybody began to let loose and dance along with the performers onstage.
Though beginning with the vocal reins, Bechtolt alternated between keyboard, sampler, guitar, bass, and even drums during the set, proving he was proficient at each. On songs like "Psychic City," and "Dystopia (The Earth Is On Fire)," Evans moved to the center of the stage and all eyes were on her as she crooned and danced. In between songs, the two took turns telling anecdotes and thanking the crowd for celebrating such a special day with them. During the band's last song, the brand new single "Second Summer," confetti blasted from the stage and Evans dropped a mass of balloons into the crowd, solidifying that they couldn't have put on a more entertaining birthday show.
Critical Bias: YACHT's live show makes each song come to life in a way the records cannot convey
The Crowd: An eclectic mix of YACHT fans
Overheard in the Crowd: "Where in the hell is YACHT?!" in reference to the band's set starting 45 minutes late.
Random Notebook Dump: YACHT's "Smiangle" symbol has got to be the cutest band logo...ever.