CSS’s springy, disco-clad groove, “Let’s Make Love And Listen to Death From Above” is hardly the kind of song you’d imagine a crowd of concertgoers moshing to. Those kinds of wild collisions are usually left to metal-heads, not a hipster tribe full of cutesy electro-pop devotees. But much like the free-spirited Brazilian band, their fans—who undoubtedly came out to party last night—aren’t concerned with logic. It’s about fun. After all, since CSS (a.k.a. Cansei de Ser Sexy, Portuguese for “tired of being sexy”) came on the scene in 2005, “fun” has pretty much been their motto. But this time around, the band is continuing their never-ending quest to pulsate every neon-graze dancefloor without guitarist and producer Adriano Cintra. Cintra left the group over creative differences, shortly after the release of the group’s third release, La Liberación in 2011. If the girls were reeling over his absence last night, the infectious songs he helped to draft on the group’s past three albums were certainly his stand-in.
The fizzy dance soiree of “Make Love” exploded with jumpy switches that had the band and attendees bouncing around erratically. It was as peppy as their opener, “ArtBitch” which pokes fun at pretentious artists. The song’s thrilling pounds were provoked by cheeky lyrics that should probably only be heard through a set of headphones…at a very low volume. Never one to censor her ridiculous banters, Lovefoxxx, the band’s frontwoman, skidded her lines brazenly: “Lick lick lick my art-tit, suck suck suck my art-hole,” she shrieked.
Lovefoxxx initially came on stage wearing a peasant-like red blouse and wide-bottom get-up, and then quickly stripped down to reveal a funky two-piece leopard suit and sheer black blouse for the bouncy track “City Grrl.” From then on, it was all about the theatrics, perhaps to make up for subpar vocals. Midway through the show, Lovefoxxx began dancing around with a black and gold cape, sliding across the stage swooshing her Rapunzel-like jet-black hair. And her dramatic moves worked: It was hard to keep your eyes off her even during talk-sing tunes like “Red Alert” and “Dynamite.”
From the bouncy “City Grrrl,” to the band’s breakout hit “Music Is My Boyfriend” (which had Lovefoxxx moving her arms like a crazed ribbon lost in the sky), much of the songs depended on fast, mid-tempo guitar riffs and keys so as to not make Lovefoxxx’s vocals sound like a bad karaoke session. The hip-hop sprinkled, party-clapper “I’ve Seen You Drunk Girl,” produced by Dave Sitek, was probably one of the few times her faux-paux rhymes worked flawlessly.
But pointing out Lovefoxxx’s sparse vocal talent is somewhat of a useless observation. Anyone who knows anything about CSS knows that the band doesn’t take itself seriously—and of course, that’s the appeal. They aren’t merely creating a good time. They are the good time. Most of the band’s discography consists of fluffy, danceaholic tunes that aim to keep you standing still no less than a few seconds. And if that was the goal of last night’s show, CSS more than surpassed it.