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Friday, July 18, 2008

DJ Shadow & Cut Chemist McCarren Pool

When I arrived at McCarren pool, reviewer Dave Lipp told me about the decomposed body, which was found around ten that morning in a shed near the pool. I thought of all the shows I had recently been to such as Devo and The Breeders while this body lay decomposing. Eerie to say the least. The news did not deter Brooklyn concert goers, who were still trickling in as Gift of Gab opened the show followed by a set by DJ JazzyJay.

Turntablists DJ Shadow & Cut Chemist took the stage a little before sunset. Shadow came out and welcomed the audience a spoke a little bit about The Hard Sell and then played a short and silly instructional film explaining the details of what the duo set out to do.

Both DJs were armed with only a few record cases of vinyl 7 inches, 8 turntables, a mixer and a pedal board. The concept of only playing seven inches had been explored previously by the pair when they teamed up for Brainfreeze and Product Placement, but this set was much more diverse and they delivered over two hours of music ranging from funk, rock, new wave, eastern, metal and even video game themes. They blended the music of Zepplin's "Stairway to Heaven" with the lyrics of theme song to Gilligan's Island, and sped up the pitch on Blondie's "Call Me" to accompany an Alvin & The Chipmunks video playing on the large screens serving as their backdrop, and even managed to mix in "Everlong" by Foos Fighters with an oldies tune.

They played a huge set then another back to back and then came out in front of the stage with portable turntables and mixers strapped to their bodies and did a rocking jam. The duo played well after McCarren Pool's ten o'clock curfew and then left the stage thanking the appreciative audience.

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