The opening acts were so bad as to be worthy of negative mention. First (after the obligatory hour-past-doors wait) was Penthouse Penthouse. They were unremittingly awful. The two of them bobbed along frenetically to a beat that existed only in their heads, not in the discordant and disjointed noise they produced. It was like jazz and electronica had a head-on crash with no survivors.
Ana Sia, a solo female DJ, was... passable but by the time she got started we were two hours past when I wanted to be seeing Glitch Mob and her adding a further 45 minute delay moved her from "mediocre warm-up act" to "get off the stage already".
Listening to Glitch Mob you can feel the bombast and barely controlled thunder. They come out of L.A. and a style there that is simply called "beat". If you're not familiar with their sound, try http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=qKxDzyHPo0o - That's "Can't Kill Us", their set opener, which is used in the new trailer for the upcoming Sin City movie (http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=QHCJfhXvDM0). I was hoping their live act would have the kind of rolling percussive assault that I haven't heard since the last Concussion Ensemble show, way too many years ago. I was not disappointed.
Their electronica is a set of large-pad consoles that they use to trigger musical phrases and sequences. But behind the three of them are several pairs of drums, which are hooked up to cool lighting and video effects, and... drums! In person the effect is phenomenal. They are loud without being offensive - I could feel the pulse of the bass against my skin even though we weren't up close.
On stage they're three guys clearly having a great time. This was the second night of their tour, and they were excited though still finding their feet. Some of the transitions were not as smooth as you'd likely see late in the tour but they made up for it with a freshness and energy I really enjoyed.
We decided to get actual seats, which put us in the balcony rather than on the floor. We missed the crush and the crowd surfing that went on below but, for me, the ability to have room to dance and being able to sit for the hours while I waited for Glitch Mob to hit the stage was crucial. I was notably less people-phobic the next day than I am after a standard general-admission show.