SHOWS // Tei Shi @ The Echoplex

Post by Misha

My favorite things are the ones that are true only instinctively. The stuff that kind of only makes sense if you don’t look at it directly, like those magic eye posters, where meaning only flickers at the edges. Poetry. Music. Certain types of bathroom graffiti.

There’s this lyric from Tei Shi‘s Crawl Space single, Keep Running, that’s like that.

“Time is so sad.”

I mean, the whole song is wonderful, but just those four words. They drop to the pit of my stomach for reasons I can’t quite explain.

 

I saw Tei Shi last Friday for the first time in several years. Her live performance has grown and fleshed out considerably since the first time I saw her play a free Monday night show in a little courtyard in Hollywood. She’s added members to her live band and developed her confidence onstage as a budding pop star.

But then as now the real essence of her performance is something a little harder to pin down. What might seem like a straight pop show is punctuated by a sparseness, so fleeting that you’ll miss it if you aren’t paying attention. She has a songwriting sensibility that makes use of negative space – like the shadow of Britney Spears produced by The XX. It tinges everything with shades of enigma even as her sparkling melodies dance through the crowd.

This duality shined through in her performance of Como Si, and her floor shaking encore of her breakout single Bassically. She overcame even the Echoplex’s notoriously difficult bass treatment to deliver a powerful night full of hip-shaking mystery.


Buy Tei Shi’s latest album, Crawl Space, here. Her current tour has wrapped up, but keep an eye out and don’t miss her next time she comes through your city.

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