Last night The Dodos and Magik*Magik took to the stage in a pysch folk, orchestral sandwich. The allegedly sold-out show began with a series of experimental Magik*Magik musicians tweaking the cello, manipulating percussion, mastering the marimba and closing with a melancholy ditty including special guest John Vanderslice. After a short break, The Dodos appeased an eager (and vocal) crowd with a long set of flawlessly performed hits. The always earnest Meric looked out to the audience early on and said, "Wow. This is a really busy place to play," as if the band hadn't just a few weeks ago entranced a packed audience of art enthusiasts for SFMOMA's anniversary weekend.
We all know The Dodos are poised for great success and yet I was still blown away by how good these guys are live. Meric's voice booms and strikes a chord reminiscent of Johnny Cash while all three band members hit every note on their respective instruments like there's no tomorrow. For the final set, Magik*Magik's full orchestra rejoined the trio onstage for another mesmerizing series of songs. Minna Choi, the mastermind behind Magik*Magik, seamlessly integrated strings and choir voices with the finger-picking acoustics and vibraphone melodies of The Dodos in a brilliantly composed collaboration between modern and classical.
After a two hour set, they ran out of songs but Meric knew the crowd wanted more. He called Minna over for a final impromptu duet of "Undeclared" that actually brought a tear to my eyes. We could have listened all night.
If you weren't there, I'm sorry. Just don't make the mistake of missing this show next time these two powerhouses collaborate.