A Night at the Rickshaw Stop with The Limousines
By David Brehmer
Photo by Nissa Nicole
A sold-out, all ages crowd gathered at the Rickshaw Stop last Thursday to celebrate The Limousines’ recent signing to rising star indie label, Dangerbird Records. The San Jose twosome have skyrocketed to popularity, moving quickly from airplay on Live 105’s Soundcheck to opening up for Duran Duran and Weezer in a space of just a few months, largely due to their two hit singles and a successful self-produced LP, Get Sharp (pressed by the fine folks at Record Pressing).
“We know it’s because of you”, front man Eric Victorino shouted appreciatively before launching into their undeniably fun Buggles sequel and viral sensation, “Internet Killed the Video Star” with every one in the house gleefully singing along.
Victorino, Gio Giusti and added guest drummer Dino Campanella (usually manning the throne for Dredg) held court impressively through a pulsing set of their raucous, synth-driven best, shrouded in fog machine haze and surrounded by incessant, multi-colored strobes. Victorino was as much frenetic rock showman as a disaffected dancepop idol, throwing himself into every ecstatic chorus, crowd firmly in the palm of his hand. Giusti worked a veritable electronica tool bench, swiping the digital turntable, deftly jabbing his MPC and an ipad synth app, all with his talkbox tube at the ready, adding dark, robotic echoes to the ambient hooks of tracks like “The Future”. Through it all, Dino’s pounding drums and tight, disco-esque flourishes lent a presence and depth hard to achieve with electronics alone.
Like Soft Cell or New Order (a group they covered mid-set), The Limousines have infectious beats and lyrics two shades darker than you’d expect. However, the overriding message is clear. “We could live forever/but we’ll never be this young”, Victorino sang in “Flaskaboozeendancingshoes”. That seize-the-moment-tonight spirit certainly caught up the crowd – by the end of the show, no one wasn’t singing, dancing or both.
After an hour, the last synth faded; the confetti and balloons had settled or popped. “That’s every single song we have!” declared a clearly drained Victorino to a sweaty mob begging for more. It’s hard to blame them. The Limousines know how to make technologically-driven music exciting live: make it rock, make it loud, and make it fun.