Pictures and words by Duane Clawson
If one was looking to burn off a portion of their Thanksgiving feast, 2720 Cherokee was the place to be on this Thanksgiving night. I love to venture outside of my element and tonight was one of those said ventures. This was my first visit to 2720, which provides a vast array of artist from DJ sets to an upcoming soul & funk review. 2720 provided plenty of entertainment throughout the evening. Two gentlemen entertained with a fire show during the DJ sets; one working fireballs attached to chains followed by another twirling fire batons. Girls scantily clad in boy shorts and sports bras worked lighted hula hoops throughout the night. And if all of this could not hold your attention, the ongoing fashion show provided by the 2720 patrons surely would. I took this show to see Infected Mushroom, a band I have been a fan of for a few years now. I became a fan through the strangest of circumstances. While DJing a 16-year old's birthday party, a kid asked if I had any Infected Mushroom. I said, “get away from me kid, I’m a man of the law and haven’t had any shrooms since high school”. The kid produced an Infected Mushroom CD and I felt stupid but I thanked the kid for turning me on to a different kind of mushroom. Alright enough of my silliness, on with this review.
Miss J got the 2720 crowd loose with her skills behind the mixer. STodd, another St. Louis-area DJ, pumped and primed 2720 with his psytrance mixes and a perfect fit for this bill. For those who have not heard Infected Mushroom, they are a tightly wound ball of psychedelic trance, heavy metal, and electronica. Infected Mushroom spices up their brand of psychedelic trance by playing a live set. The band consists of a guitarist (Tom Cunningham), keyboards/synths (Erez Aizen), drummer (Rogerio Jardim), and singer (Amit Duvdevani). Infected Mushroom began in as a collaboration between Aizen and Duvdevani in 1998. This resulted in the production of an album The Gathering, released in 1999. The duo has since released six more albums with a new album to be released some time in 2012. The audience on hand was much larger than I anticipated for a Thanksgiving night and one of the more active audiences of the shows I covered this year. The sound system utilized by 2720 was reminiscent of the seventies and eighties. The system sat on the floor and reproduced Infected Mushroom’s sound in thunderous fashion. Again, my Etymotic ear plugs came in quite handy.
Duvdevani and Aizen are study in varying contrast while onstage. Duvdevani is in continuous motion while Aizen is content behind his bank of synthesizers and keyboards. Tom Cunningham could easily win a Slash lookalike contest and brings a heavy metal edge to the Mushroom sound. For an hour and half the audience was in non-stop bounce mode and oblivious to the guy with the camera (me) attempting to freeze images of the band. Two highlights of the evening for me were Mushroom covering the Foo Fighters' “The Pretender” and including a song in their setlist that first turned me on to the band, “Becoming Insane”. When all was said and done Infected Mushroom left the 2720 crowd sweaty and in a psychedelic trance state that only their music can produce. A big thanks to Sophie McNeil and Randy Siedman from the Infected Mushroom team and 2720 Cherokee for their hospitality. Pictures of the show are below:
Contributed by Duane Clawson