Not only is Swedish electronica act Little Dragon one of the most interesting groups I discovered this year (a discovery I owe to Hollis, by the way -- thanks, lover), the band's performance was easily one of the most hypnotic, mesmerizing performances I've ever seen, period. Yukimi Nagano engaged the audience effortlessly, and would've even if she wasn't a stylish, beautiful woman undulating whilst hitting bizarre, probably-homemade percussion instruments with sticks. Her way of singing is most easily likened to R&B or soul -- it's smooth and soothing in a sort of lounge-y way -- but there's a forceful hip hop kind of energy to it that isn't directly linked to the volume at which she sings. And the band's smooth, mid-tempo electronica proved to be the perfect accompaniment for such unusual pipes.
While experiencing a band live for the first time and having them exceed every one of your expectations is always pleasurable, what I liked about the show was that even the people who had no clue who Little Dragon was (I'm pretty sure at least half the people there had come to see THEE Satisfaction, who opened with a killer set as always) got really into it. Making such a positive first impression on a crowd speaks volumes -- and it was a true first impression, as Little Dragon hails from Sweden and had never performed in Seattle before. I'm pretty confident that in a year or so, Little Dragon will be big enough to pack the Showbox, meaning that all the people lucky or savvy enough to have been at the Nectar for their Seattle debut experienced something really special: the kind of I-was-there-first type of show that you can brag about later.