HEALTH Returns for Day For Night
There’s something intriguing about darkness in music, which is part of the allure to Los Angeles band HEALTH. Like dance music for the insane, the band brings elements of life’s harsh realities to their sound while adding hook heavy choruses at each and every turn. Recently the band performed at Warehouse Live here in Houston, thus giving fans of preview of what could be in store when they return in December for Day For Night. The set, heavily steeped in tracks from their new album “Death Magic” was something for all of the senses, and crazed like the album itself.
I love when a band starts off in the dark. There’s something to the unknown that makes a show feel like a present to be opened. Performing as a three piece, HEALTH wasted no time in starting off with said darkness, opening with the heavy handed nature of “Courtship II” from “Death Magic.” The sheer power of the drums in a live setting mixed with the creepy synths that cut through the song like a knife was something to behold. The way in which they segued into the lead single, “Men Today” was something on a completely different level from what most acts do. Throughout the set, the band’s use of dark electronica intertwined with live drums, guitar, bass, and even occasional secondary drum work was otherworldly. Mixing in old favorites with the newer tracks, the group operated as a three piece, keeping the energy high while occasionally engaging with the audience.
While I had seen the band twice before, there was a different energy brought to this show that left me more impressed than previous sets. Perhaps it was the band operating as a three piece, perhaps it was the fact that these new tracks have a heavier tone than their previous albums, but something about this performance can only make one wonder what they’ll bring to the table in December. Even hearing dancier tracks like “Flesh World(UK)” during this performance, had an intensity that shook your bones as they performed like they were playing for their release from a prison camp. Their use of light, or lack thereof, made the show feel harsher while still being engaging from start to finish. At no point did it feel like they would let up, and the fact that they’re in their tenth year as a band just showcased how much stronger they are as a unit.
When it was done, I felt like I had just experienced something special, and something that I wanted to go through again and again. When I found out that the band had been added to the Day For Night lineup, I was thrilled to learn that I’d have a chance to watch others experience a band who feels like they’re at the top of their game. You can catch them when they perform Sunday, December 20th at this year’s Day For Night festival. The two day immersion of sound and light still has some tickets left, available here.