Atlanta, GA, The Loft, 05/04/2013
On May 4, the Alternative arrived in Atlanta as IAMX reached the halfway point of the band’s North American Animal
Impulses tour. Fans of all styles and types and ages – as young as 8, as old as mid-80’s – circled the Loft in anticipation, slowly filing in to the darkened midtown venue as the 8:00pm start time approached. This night’s show was IAMX alone with no opening acts to tease and prolong the audience, so the excitement was high. Fans from all across the Southeast crowded the stage, waiting eagerly for the show to begin.
An hour-and-a-half past the listed show time, the music began to swell and IAMX took to the stage. Chris Corner stepped in to the light, dressed positively glamorously and entirely androgynous, flanked by his wildly dressed entourage of instrumentalists. The crowd screamed and the band launched into its set, sampling from all albums, serenading the room with “Spit It Out,” “Sorrow,” “Kiss + Swallow,” “Kingdom of Welcome Addiction,” and more, backed by strange and stunning video visuals. Never before has this writer heard so many fans sing along to so many songs in unison.
In regards to the crowd, though it has already been stated, it is worth noting again that the audience of the IAMX show was perhaps one of the more diverse groups of people ever seen at a show in this genre. That an off niche act such as IAMX could attract and hold those from punk, goth, raver, emo, “mainstream,” and unclassified backgrounds is impressive and astounding. Corner’s performance can be described as nothing less than vaudevillian in look, sound, mood, and feeling. In spite of Corner’s commanding and demanding stage presence, keyboardist Janine Gezang arguably stole the spotlight on numerous occasions with her wild key performance and powerful backing vocals on songs such as “My Secret Friend.” Gezang’s energetic performance indeed rivals that of Corner’s.
IAMX continued to woo the audience with very little pause for conversation in between, dancing from “The Unified Field” to “Music People” to “Tear Garden” to “The Alternative.” The band left the stage after an hour of show, only to return to the pleas of the crowd for an encore of “President,” “I Come with Knives,” and more. The crowd cheered and sang and cried and clapped for a performance that many of them will undoubtedly never forget.
Zak Vaudo (Chaostar)