Music News

Best Concerts of 2012: The Growlers at Propaganda, Lake Worth

With 2013's breath already warm on our necks, most music scribes are reflecting on the year past. We contemplate the good and bad bits of the year, we compile our "best of" lists, and we (sometimes subconsciously) set our new standards for the next year. 

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- Best Concerts of 2012

Your average music journalist is a jaded individual. We go to shows for a living: the occasion of concerts fades, the impact of jarring sound systems and buzzing crowds fails to stir any sort of sensory response after a while, and the ease of losing oneself in a performance is gone pretty quickly. It grows increasingly difficult to find yourself in the haze of a show. But, in 2012, the rather unexpected performance by the Growlers at Propaganda, Lake Worth, proved to be memorable enough to earn a space at the top of my favorite shows of 2012.

To start, there were three bands on the bill -- perfect for a weeknight show -- and, they were all fantastic. Each band performed while engulfed in the glow of live psychedelic projections done the old fashion way (with a projector, oils, and food coloring), and the crowd was large enough to encourage strong sets without ruining the intimacy of the gig. 

The first surprise of the evening was the unexpectedly excellent set by the Growlers' tour-mates, Jane Jane Pollack, a quintet from the taint between Florida and Georgia that simply blew us away. Jane Jane Pollack's set was a dynamic slab of heavily orchestrated psych-informed indie that took the entire room by storm. 

However, the Growlers performance was as close to perfect as we could have hoped for, and the group's dark take on surf-drenched psychedelia was the perfect soundtrack to a rainy South Florida night. The pieces fell into place in a way that made for an evening of sonic opium, and a reminder that the laid back sets can be just as gratifying as the bombast of a huge stadium performance. 

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David Von Bader