Autograf & Goldroom Spellbind At Terminal 5
Every once in a while a tour comes along that stands apart from all the rest and truly defines an artist by bringing their vision to life. Rather than a simple string of shows across a few dates in a handful of cities, you can get the sense when an artist puts their heart and soul into bringing their fans something creative and special. On Friday, October 7, Terminal 5 hosted one such tour.
A duo of dance music’s brightest rising stars, California’s Goldroom and the Chicago-based trio Autograf, joined forces to co-headline a picture perfect night. Although both of these artists have performed at some of the world’s biggest festivals like Euphoria and Coachella, and have also amassed huge fan bases of their own, Autograf and Goldroom remain two of electronic music’s relatively best kept secrets.
I came across Goldroom last year at Electric Forest where I had my first taste of his vibrant and sensual blend of live dance music. I was blown away by the band’s flawless on-stage chemistry, and their innate ability to craft a sexy yet carefree atmosphere of blissful grooving. This year when I ventured to the Great White North for the one and only Shambhala Music Festival, Autograf was easily one of my favorite sets of that unforgettable weekend. The genre-bending trio from Chicago has become one of the most holistic and cutting-edge artistic collectives in the world of electronic music.
In a stroke of pure genius these two hugely influential artists have joined forces to tour the country in style. As a lover of both of these artist’s enigmatic styles, making my way to Terminal 5 to check out this tour for myself was a no-brainer.
Upon arrival I was surprised to find a relatively empty Terminal 5. Big Chocolate, the night’s only true opener, performed for a modest crowd of early comers inside the cavernous New York venue. As I said before, alhough Goldroom and Autograf have certainly captured the attention of many “in the know” dance music aficionados, both bands have yet to truly capture the eye of the vast majority of so-called “EDM” lovers. In my opinion this only helps to add to both artist’s burgeoning success. Rather than having their shows overrun by hordes of ravers simply looking to hop onto the newest in vogue trend, Autograf and Goldroom attract their true fans without the need for excess fanfare.
Despite the initially paltry numbers I found when doors opened, Terminal 5’s main floor was bustling with excitement by the time Autograf took the stage at around 10 o’clock. All at once the crowd filled the dance floor and the venue was beginning to surge with energy. As the trio’s DIY stage set up beamed to life, exclamations of joy sprang up from the audience as we dove in.
Autograf got things off to a sweltering start with their trademark infectious sounds. In today’s dance music landscape many artists try to mesh sounds and genres together, searching for a unique sound. However when it comes to Autograf this trio seems to have an organic approach to their music that stems from a very deep and personal place. With multiple musical dialects bleeding through their beats, Autograf has the uncanny ability to take opposing sonic textures and craft them into one cohesive representation of who they are.
Autograf paired tribal rhythms perfectly with synth driven melodies, while simultaneously dovetailing marauding hip-hop elements with the sophisticated flavors of deep and tropical house. An Autograf performance is like watching a musical gymnastics routine. The trio flawlessly maneuver and contort through so many genres that they can cater to any musical pallet. As a truly diverse collection of multi-faceted artists, Autograf exude a worldliness that gives their music great depth and a global resonance.
Throughout their thrilling set Autograf treated us to soulful remixes of Stevie Wonder’s “Superstitious” and Marvin Gaye’s “Heard It Through The Grapevine.” The trio also broke out their scintillating remix of Odesza’s “All We Need.” Showcasing their skill as instrumentalists, all three members served up jaw-dropping solos that resulted in a busted hand drum being thrown into the crowd. Amidst the absolutely incendiary vibes, Autograf dropped hits like “Metaphysical,” “Don’t Worry” and my personal favorite “Dream.” By mixing effortless sophistication with unabashed passion, Autograf has distinguished themselves as one of the freshest sounds that you will find in any corner of the music world.
With Autograf completely blowing us all away I had almost forgotten that the night wasn’t close to over yet. After a quick break to catch our breath, the crowd reassembled for the night’s second headliner.
Josh Legg, better known by his artist handle, Goldroom, is currently riding the crest of a huge wave. Since breaking onto the scene in 2011, Goldroom has enjoyed great success by bringing his lush and emotive music to life. Quintessentially California with a modern electronic flair, Goldroom is one of the shining examples of how dance music has evolved. With a live band on stage to back him up along with the magnetic bombshell that is Nikki Segal helping out on vocals, Goldroom brought his enigmatic vision to life on the Terminal 5 stage.
Putting his new album West Of West front and center, Goldroom opened up with the hot new ballad “Silhouette,” followed by fan favorites “Only You Can Show Me” and “Til Sunrise.” Scintillating new tunes like “Back To You,” “Freeway Lights,” and “Teenage Waste” had the crowd singing loudly in full unison. The audience watched on with starry-eyed wonder as Terminal 5’s disco ball layered us in a kaleidoscopic spectacle during Goldroom’s spellbinding classic “Fifteen.”
The nearly half empty venue that I had walked into a few hours before was now a distant memory, as die-hard fans of the luminous California artist lined Terminal 5 from wall to wall. Born from Legg’s love of the sea, Goldroom’s sound is unmistakably nautical. Thick and vibrant chords washed over the audience like heavy euphoric waves bringing the vibes to a massive climax.
The show closed out with a few more of Goldroom’s biggest old and new hits like “Embrace,” “Retrograde” and “Breaks.” As the final notes wafted into the air the entire audience floated out on cloud 9 grateful to these two phenomenal acts for a night of bliss.
Trust me you will want to check out this tour as it makes it’s final stops around the country. Check out the upcoming dates below and enter our contest to win tickets to the Chicago show at Concord Music Hall!