Swedish act Little Dragon formed their electronic band in Gothenburg in 1996, comprising of Yukimi Nagano (lead vocalist), Hakan Wirenstrand (keys), Erik Bodin (drums) and Fredrik Kallgren (bass/keys). They named themselves after Nagano’s nickname because she often threw tantrums during recording.
TV drama Grey’s Anatomy exposed them slightly during album Machine Dreams (2009). Album Ritual Union (2011) saw collaborations with artists such as SBTRKT and Big Boi, plus touring with Gorilla’s act elevated the band. ‘Nabuma Rubberband’ was released earlier in 2014 influenced by Prince, FKA twigs and Janet Jackson.
Little Dragon’s Vicar Street (Dublin) debut opened like a sonic boom to a room of excited fans. Nagano stepped out, superhero pointed arms into blue neon flickering lights performing ‘Please Turn’. The act has come a long way since their first Irish performance in front of ten people, according to Yukimi.
The crowd of like-minded souls, Nagano look-a-likes (she is rather stylish!), danced excitedly and grooved around the venue to the super bass and synth lines of ‘My Step’. Asking if they could play an old song, the crowd shrilled with excitement and they hypnotised us with ‘After the Rain’.
‘Pretty Girls’ is such a beautiful song, she literally shook the vocal and sounds out of her body, unreal to experience. “The green mermaid, and the wavy mane, the California dream, riding a unicorn through your Dalí, the free fantasy, the care free”.
Colourful neon moving in time with each song, Bodin is in his element on drums and Fred and Wirenstrand’s electro sounds simply oozed sex appeal. Nagano is fascinating to watch on top of being a skilled vocalist, she knocked out some serious dance moves particularly during ‘Shuffle a Dream’.
‘Test’ may have burst some ear drums, but all was forgiven when they came back with the awe-inspiring ‘Ritual Union’, the entire crowd sang with her for this one. Ending the night with a spectacular light show for ‘Only One’, only to return for an encore with ‘Little Man’ and ‘Twice’.
A superbly modern, creative and gifted act, Little Dragon ignited fires in Dublin last night.
Review by Aine Byrne
Photo Google images 2014 and Little Dragon.
In association with Dublinconcerts.ie