As an appetizer to Inure's Saturday night set at Bar Sinister, keyboardist Schlaut opened things up with a set of his solo material. Consisting mostly of '80s New Wave covers like the Buggles' "Video Killed The Radio Star" and Tears For Fears' "Shout," Schlaut mixed elements of retro industrial and electroclash. Although the audience seemed to be enjoying themselves, Schlaut's vocals were off-key, as if he couldn't hear himself in the monitors, and the length of the set outlasted any cleverness the original concept may have had.
Inure, on the other hand, brought the rock. Unlike too many purely electronic acts, they had a real stage presence. Vocalist Adam Moore snarled and sneered with all the Ã©lan of a classic punk rock frontman in all his lanky glory, and the rest of the band followed suit with an energetic performance.
Schlaut, perched behind an array of keyboards, sequencers, computers and a pair of flat-panel monitors, bobbed and bounced to the music and shouted along with the choruses of crowd favorites like "Deception" and "Suffocate," Rob Vogel played bass guitar through a bank of effects processors, and Sam Pfannkuche, who also plays in Imperative Reaction, hammered a virtual drum kit with such gusto that it didn't really matter that the sounds he was producing were sampled. The high point, however, was the band's cover of "Would?" by Alice In Chains, an unexpected treat on the album that reached new dimensions of both catchiness and moodiness in the live setting. Inure are definitely a cut above most of the EBM acts in their class, because they come across like a real band in concert, not just a few people pushing buttons. The only give-away came at the end of the night, when the crowd cheered for an encore that they couldn't provide, because they'd already run through all of the preprogrammed tracks they'd brought with them.
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