Best Live Music Performances of 2012

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The Dropp - Best Live Performances of 2012

Dropped by The Dropp

Welcome to The Dropp’s first ever “Best Live Music Performances” list where we not only take a look at what our Dropp writers thought of the best shows they attended in 2012, but also where we get the chance to showcase some of the best, stunning, wild, heartfelt and weird snapshots that our hard-working photographers were able to catch.

Featuring photography from James Dechert, Alex G. Perez, Lorraine Rosemary, Julia Tous and Zach Frimmel, we thank all of you for your hard work at making The Dropp a more vibrant and colorful experience for us all! And thank you to every band member, PR person, venue owner, bartender and show attendant who have let us capture you in your realest and strangest moments.

Andrew Bird | Photo by James Dechert | House of Blues in Lake Buena Vista, Fla.
Andrew Bird - Best live performance

“Bird’s not afraid to stray from the expected path or alter fan’s preconceptions of a song in a live setting; in fact, he relishes it.” —Robert Miller

Kitty Pryde | Photo by James Dechert | Backbooth in Orlando, Fla.
Kitty Pryde - Best live performance

“…[B]ecause regardless of whatever Kitty may or may not be ‘doing’ to hip-hop—or whatever pre-conceived notion people have of the genre—it’s her own creation. Maybe you can argue comparisons to Kreayshawn and Azelia Banks, but I haven’t heard quite this monotone of a style before, and it simply works in its own niche world.” —Robert Miller

Cursive | Photo by Zach Frimmel | Subterranean Cabaret Room & Music Lounge in Chicago, Ill.
Cursive - Best live performances

“If you’ve never seen Cursive live then it’s difficult to paint the pain and passion that Kasher’s performing persona purges. His eyes wide at times, his mouth draw-bridge opened, his sotto voce whispers, his piercing pitches, and his undying rapport with showgoers all comprise the stimuli of a Cursive show.” —Zach Frimmel

Kaleigh Baker | Photo by James Dechert | The Beacham in Orlando, Fla.
Kaleigh Baker - Best live performance

“Meanwhile, Kaleigh Baker is belting out some of the toughest notes I’ve ever heard and nailing every second of it. I’m enthralled. She’s cute, she’s wearing a sequin jumpsuit, and she owns it.” —Lorraine Rosemary

Edward Sharpe and the Magnetic Zeroes | Photo by James Dechert | The Beacham in Orlando, Fla.
Edward Sharpe and the Magnetic Zeroes - Best live performance

“With an overwhelming air of love, music, and togetherness the full sound of the band took over the Beacham in the closing number . . . Each voice, every crescendo, and every word uttred in blissful unison contributed to the powerful ballad, pulling tears from knotted stomachs and amazed eyes.” —Alyssa Shaina

Skrillex | Photo by Alex G. Perez | Counterpoint Music Festival Atlanta, Ga.
Skrillex - Best live performance

“Stomachs fell with every bass drop. EDM aficionados from all across the country had migrated to this field, through rain and cold and port o’ potties that made stomachs churn, for a moment like this. It is rare to see an artist excite so many people with such a high level of intensity, but Skrillex did it.” —Alyssa Shaina

Dr. Dog | Photo by James Dechert | The Social in Orlando, Fla.
Dr Dog - Best live performance

“When the room emptied out we caught our breath in the cold outside and walked home, a crowd of 20-something 20-somethings marching down Central Avenue with ringing ears and feather-light hearts, anxious for dreams and comfy in love, takers and leavers all belonging to the easy void of fate, beating wild in the nothing race.” —David Hanson

Schaffer the Darklord | Photo by Lorraine Rosemary | Nerdapalooza in Orlando, Fla.
Schaffer the Darklord - Best live performance

“Schaffer the Darklord brought anxiety, depression and split personalities to the stage with a crisp suit and tie, Guy Fawkes masks and a puppet version of himself.” —Lorraine Rosemary

Andrew Jackson Jihad | Photo by James Dechert | Backbooth in Orlando, Fla.
Andrew Jackson Jihad - Best live performance

“With no hesitation, the crowd roared for an encore. In fact, they looked ready to tear down the building if Andrew Jackson Jihad didn’t show back up on stage. Thankfully, Bonnette got back on stage to another roaring cheer, but he was shaking his head. ‘That’s a bad idea,’ he said. ‘We just gave it our all.’ Everyone booed at his encore refusal, but he put out his hands in self-defense and reasoned with them: ‘OK, we’ll play one more song . . . tomorrow in Atlanta.’” —Robert Miller

M83 | Photo by James Dechert | House of Blues in Lake Buena Vista, Fla.
M83 - Best live performance

“…[A]n M83 rave is much better than just any ol’ rave, and when Gonzalez’s droning synth/guitar combination became nothing but a static and dizzying hum before it simply died out, my breath was gone.” —Robert Miller

Earth | Photo by Julia Tous | Will’s Pub in Orlando, Fla.
Earth - Best live performance

“Carlson was so easily able to let himself go in the moment, to loose himself from all hindrances before him . . . even in front of the small group of us who appreciatively and hungrily came out to hear musicians do what they do best.” —Robert Miller

Leonard Cohen | Photo by Zach Frimmel | Key Arena in Seattle, Wash.
Leonard Cohen - Best live performance

“With such an articulate anti-hero quipping verses like ‘There’s a crack in everything / that’s how the light gets in,’ there isn’t much else you can say other than, ‘Amen.’” —Zach Frimmel

mewithoutYou | Photo by Zach Frimmel | Bottom Lounge in Chicago, Ill.
mewithoutyou - Best live performance

“If one has never stared down the barrel of a loaded mewithoutYou show, it is highly recommended for the future.” —Zach Frimmel

Bassnectar | Photo by Alex G. Perez | Counterpoint Music Festival Atlanta, Ga.
Bassnectar - Best live performance

“The crowd was consumed by his amorphous and ever-changing sounds, dancing and sweating in a frantic fervor.” —Alyssa Shaina

Crystal Castles | Photo by Alex G. Perez | Counterpoint Music Festival Atlanta, Ga.
Crystal Castles - Best live performance

“Like a beacon of light guiding the lost, the electro-punk group . . . led every attendee to the main area for a sonic explosion of chaotic noise, distorted lyrics, and a primal intensity.” —Alyssa Shaina

Damien Jurado | Photo by Zach Frimmel | Schubas in Chicago, Ill.
Damien Jurado - Best live performance

“As Damien strummed and Kyle’s rockin’ blues guitar part reigned over all sound, an immediate rush probably inundated anyone who is familiar enough with the new album to anticipate each turbulance of notes and lyrics.” —Zach Frimmel

The list continues on the next page with “Honorable Mentions” . . .

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Wed Dec 12

One Response to Best Live Music Performances of 2012

  1. Doug Tracy says:

    Great photos of the Monster Nature and Beacham shows. Who responsible?

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