December 18, 2008

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South Central, The Owl of Minerva
Egregore Music, Nov. 14

As electro-punk acts go, Does it Offend You Yeah are a lot more nimble than South Central, who opened for the former during their October UK tour. That’s expected, naturally, since opening acts aren’t automatically supposed to blow their benefactors off the stage. But something sinister’s at work here – the pungent stench of mercenary me-too-ness maybe. Unlike DIOYY, South Central risk nothing, taking the bulk of their cues (ie a lot of vocoder for the sake of vocoder) from Daft Punk and Justice rather than spreading out into the Klaxons, Johnny Rotten, Joe Jackson and hip-hop territories DIOYY pop into.

But that’s typical thinning of the herd as God intended; it’s why there are opening acts and headliners. Owl of Minerva is a collection of obtrusive TV commercial jingles for the texting age, sometimes with an ear toward acid-house whirligig synth hurricanes (“Aeon”) that may or may not be part of a plot to seem Muse-like toward a prog-rock idea or two.

Nothing wrong with all this, of course, particularly if your social life revolves around glo-sticks and defibrillating synths wiggling your Toyota. But it’s getting more expendable with each tick of the clock, be real. C- EWS