Live Concert Photography: Miami Horror with argonaut&wasp at Webster Hall 11/27/19
Initially formed in 2007, as the solo recording project of Melbourne, Australia-based DJ and producer Benjamin Plant, Miami Horror quickly expanded into a full-fledged band with the additions of Josh Moriarty (vocals, guitar), Daniel Whitechurch (bass, keys, guitar) and Kosta Theodosis (drums). With their earliest releases 2008’s Bravado EP 2010’s full-length debut Illumination and 2015’s sophomore effort All Possible Futures — the Aussie electro pop act quickly established a dance floor friendly sound influenced by Prince, New Order, Todd Rundgren and Pink Floyd, as well as from house music and electro pop.
The act’s most recent effort, 2017’s The Shapes EP was a bold and decidedly change in sonic direction for the act, with the material — sonically speaking — being largely indebted to 80s neon-colored pop and Talking Heads-like New Wave.
Last year, I wrote about “Restless,” the first bit of original material from the acclaimed Aussie electro pop act in a couple of years. “Restless,” which was a breezy, pop confection centre around shimmering synths, Nile Rodgers-like funk guitar, tons of hi-hat and a plaintive and sultry vocal contribution from Kevin Lavitt found the act returning to its collaborative and production-based roots, as its latest iteration. “The Shapes was always meant to be a one-off conceptual project, so once that was complete I began moving back towards the original creative process that Miami Horror started with; a simpler approach to production and a continued emphasize on outside vocalists,” Miami Horror’s Benjamin Plant said in press notes at the time. “For me, music has always been about completing a vision and trying to make something stand out. Allowing outside collaboration really opens me up to complete that vision without being restricted to my own skill set.”
Plant followed that up with “Luv Is Not Enough.” Centered around a two-step inducing groove and Clear Morifee’s alluring vocals, the track presents a romantic vision of empowerment and self-confidence. And while continuing in a similar vein as its immediate predecessor, Plant cited The Internet, Kaytranada, Anderson .Paak and Calvin Harris‘ 2017 single “Slide,” as causing a big shift in perspective. “We hadn’t really been into much new music. Everything was feeling dull and minimal,” Plant says of the writing of “Luv Is Not Enough.” “Then when I heard ‘Slide,’ it was a seemingly revelatory moment. It was refreshing to hear a song that was based around the simplicity of a good bass line and chords. It made me realize that maybe we’d been overthinking things, as those had always been two of our favorite and highest prioritized elements when we started out.”
Along with the announcement that we should be expecting Miami Horror’s highly-anticipated, third full-length album sometime this year, they closed out 2019 wit a 17 date North American tour with an indie electro pop All-Star lineup that included Reva Devito and TC Milan and Melbourne’s Queen Magic on guitar. The tour included a November 27, 2019 stop at Webster Hall. Brooklyn-based electro pop act argonaut&wasp opened the night. Check out photos from the show below.
argonaut&wasp is a Brooklyn-based electro pop act centered around its core duo Theo and Trey. Obsessed with 70s fashion, 80s synth sounds and 90s culture, the project actively seamlessly meshes electronic production with the raw energy of a live band. (Speaking of live, the project expands to a quartet for live shows.) Interestingly, the act has received attention for a sound that some have described as the soundtrack to New York.