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DJ Shadow @ The Wonder Ballroom 04/26/2012

DJ Shadow @ The Wonder Ballroom 04/26/2012

DJ motherfuckin’ Shadow, aka Josh Davis, seized the trip hop scene by building up steam through the earlier years of the 90’s to unleash his mastery in ’96 with Endtroducing. His 20+ year career took him to the Wonder Ballroom Thursday night, where he continued to channel the music that has always flowed through him, and audibly undressed a full house. He’s been on tour for a while now promoting his latest album, The Less You Know, The Better (2011), which involves playing inside a white Shadowsphere that can rotate.

For most of the show mind-numbing/boggling images dance across it and the backdrop, sometimes blurring everything together. At times, he’ll turn the sphere so that you can watch him do his thing, which includes a mini set of drums. I was lucky enough to see this gimmick twice and unfortunately if you didn’t catch him in Portland, then tough luck: before even starting, he came out on stage to announce that he was glad this tour was almost over (only two shows left after PDX) and that the next time we see him his show will be completely different.

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It’s true that some fans are still stuck on the sleek, slick, fervent blips and bleeps that they remember making teenage love to…but when you stop expecting an “Organ Donor” on every new album you’ll find yourself just as gratified.

Words and photos by Kelly Kovl. More on Flickr.