Concert Review: Purity Ring at Ace of Cups (Columbus, OH)
In case you follow the events page on here, you would have noticed that this show was conspicuously absent from the list. This was a near impulse decision to attend on my part. I discovered Purity Ring via Pitchfork.com over the summer, making a mental note to look further into them but never following up – that is, until I heard they were playing the Ace of Cups venue, located only a couple minutes of walking distance from my house.
The show was late and popular – people were lined up to see the skyrocketing in popularity duo until past 10 PM, when the show began. Headaches and Evian Christ began the show with two DJ sets of chillwave electronica, setting the ambience for the evening. No light show for these guys whatsoever, they seemed content to play through their sets, disappearing from stage with little more than a wave to the crowd.
The Montreal and Halifax based Purity Ring displayed one of the most interesting performances I’ve seen – it was easy to sense why they are rising in popularity so quickly. If you’re here reading this, you likely are intrigued by the band as well and know of their unique live show. Everything is driven by Corin Roddick, who runs a custom built rig with nodules that light up and trigger different sounds depending on the track. In addition to controlling the beats and the light show, Roddick manipulates the voice of Megan James, the other half of Purity Ring, as he pleases. No two shows are the same. Ace of Cups ended up being the perfect place for this pair to perform – being a venue on the south side of the diverse neighborhood Clintonville, the area hipsters were out in droves. Not to mention the ambience of the venue itself is perfect for a band like Purity Ring – it is relaxed and intimate without conveying the sense of being in a dungeon. Purity Ring performed an hour-long set with no encore, essentially consisting of the majority of their LP Shrines. Set highlights included “Crawlersout”, “Fineshrine”, and “Obedear.” At one point Roddick was taking Megan’s voice down several octaves between songs in a wonderfully eerie manner, and later the show ended in what I can only describe as a beautiful cacophony, concluding the most chill dance party I’ve been to.