There are shows that you can prepare yourself for, getting excited in the days leading up to it; then there are shows that two songs into it you find yourself going, “What the f*ck is going on?” Saturday night was the latter as Perturbator invaded Dallas with his form of dark synthwave that completely saturated every space within the walls of the Granada Theater in Dallas.
French artist James Kent, aka Perturbator, is currently touring the US in support of his 2021 release Lustful Sacraments, and the 2022 collaborative release Final Light with Johannes Persson. On Saturday night’s stop on the tour, it took all of about 45 secs before he got the entire room dancing. I’m not talking about a crowd of half-dressed rave kids with fairy wings and glow sticks, this was a crowd of black shirt-wearing metal heads that would be more comfortable at a Slayer show than they are at a dance club, but there they were dancing and grooving to everything Perturbator was sending their way from his keyboard pulpit. Joined on stage with his friend and drummer Dylan Hyard, the set was a constant pummeling of ultra-heavy beats and dark evil synth.
But there was one problem…this was hands-down the hardest show that this photographer has ever shot. Engulfed in thick haze and a massive array of backlighting, most of the set saw the band as dark silhouettes as they applied their craft, but it didn’t take away from how amazing the night was. This was an artist I’d been looking forward to for a long time, and at the end of the night, I was left going “What the f*ck was that?”
Perturbator continues to coheadline the Heaven and Hell Tour with Health across the US till September 18th. Then both bands head to Europe from October 6th to November 17th. Exact dates and stops can be found here.