Wednesday, April 24
The beauty of Purity Ring is in the detail. On stage it’s the sputtering lights, the heavy fog and hanging cocoon-like orbs. In the music, it’s the throbbing urban beats, Corin Roddick’s sharp synth production and vocalist Megan James’ dreamy coo.
Part music experience, part performance art exhibit, Purity Ring’s set was full of sensory cues - Roddick tapping on branches of 3D shapes, emitting different tones; James’ vocals synched to a variety of textures and effects; the orbs, reflecting different hues of the rainbow as the set progressed. It’s the combination of all of these things, working seamlessly together to create an overwhelming feeling of calmness, that embodies what the Montreal-based electronic duo is able to achieve in their live show.
Beautifully crafted and heavy on whimsical wanderings, the set felt like one long, emotive track - highlighted by the familiar melodies and lyrics of songs like “Fineshrine” and “Amenamy.” And while the sounds proved the perfect match for the sweaty bodies dipping and weaving throughout the crowd, Purity Ring’s biggest drawback continues to be their limited material.
The act has played the Seattle area at least four times, and with just one full-length release under their belts (2012’s Shrines), each performance has brought the same: a pulsing wave screaming of potential cut far too short. Plain and simply, they just don’t have enough material to meet the demands of the crowd.
Unfortunately, Wednesday’s set at the Neptune, which capped off at just shy of an hour and skipped an encore, met that same, abrupt fate.