Cut Copy, March 11, 2009 @ Club Nokia

I like to imagine I’m inside an ‘80s movie. That I’m Footloose. At a prom. Or one of those Less Than Zero parties with the TVs all over the house. Watching Phoebe Cates get out of the pool in Fast Times at Ridgemont High. And Molly Ringwald takes out one of her earrings and puts it in Judd Nelson’s hand.

That’s the feeling of Cut Copy, except it’s 2009. Happy, high energy, synth-pop, post-hipster, new new wave, whatever you want to call it – the Australian threesome brought their flavor of dance and pop beats to a sold out crowd on Wednesday, March 11, at Club Nokia in downtown LA. The throw-back, flash-forward music had the crowd moving tirelessly, and no fire marshal could tell them no…

…which was exactly what happened the night before. The Wednesday show was the second of two sold out LA shows, both originally scheduled for the Henry Fonda Theater. On March 10, their show was cut short by the LA Fire Department due to being over capacity.

Dan Whitford, Cut Copy’s singer/guitarist/keyboardist, apologized to the crowd for the incident before going into “Saturdays” off their first release Bright Like Neon Love.

There is a feeling in me
and I don’t know why.
Is there a feeling in you
that you can’t deny?

Most of the material played was off their most recent album In Ghost Colours, however. They started the night with “Hearts on Fire,” and encored with their biggest hit, “Lights and Music,” which sent the crowd into one final frenzy.

Their stage backdrop looked bright like neon love. The hypercolor fluorescent tube neon equalizer, pulsed up and down and flashed like a rainbow. It seemed like Club Nokia was a better setting for their whole neon vibe, since the décor in the club almost matched seamlessly, and the venue itself is situated in the giant, electronic flashing epicenter that is the Staples Center / LA Live.

My one bone to pick: even though the gig was moved there because of its greater crowd capacity, you couldn’t get down to the lowest level right in front of the stage unless you had a wristband (presumably requiring early arrival). So that bottom level was raucous bodies bouncing around and raising their plastic cups. Then the people just behind them were dancing a little more subdued through their jealous pangs and/or smoking weed.

I spent the first few songs standing down there watching the bouncer bounce people away from that inner circle before I went up to the balcony. It was an awesome view and nearly everyone was on their feet dancing to the synth anthems, even from the distance.

A few shots of Patron Silver, a couple beers and an hour or so of Cut Copy and I was cut-copy-pasted wasted.

I wish they had played “Time Stands Still.”