Neil Cooke-Dallin (centre) and Astrocolor are well-known for their high-energy live shows. Some of their latest studio work will be featured, however, during their Victoria show at the Capital Ballroom this Saturday (Oct. 13). Photo by EP Promotions

Astrocolor bringing unique funk-synth sound to the Capital Ballroom

Victoria band known for their festival shows making a rare appearance on their home turf

If you like improvisational jazz and funk blended with DJ mixes, you’ll want to be at the Capital Ballroom this Saturday night.

That’s when Victoria’s Astrocolor offers their home city fans a somewhat rare opportunity to see them perform as a unit. Unveiling the latest compositions in their three-EP series – known eponymously as Astrocolor I, II and III – the band aims to pack the large downtown venue with people willing to move to the grooves.

“In this day and age, it’s pretty exciting anytime you can see six people on stage making music together,” says Astrocolor front man and electronic mastermind Neil Cooke-Dallin. “It’s kind of becoming less and less of an experience (available to people), but the formula seems to work. We have a lot of fun doing it and the crowds seem to enjoy listening to it.”

While live shows by the full Astrocolor lineup are legendary for their energy and spontaneity – crafted at festivals such as Burning Man, Tall Tree and Rifflandia – translating that onto a recording isn’t exactly how this group goes about things.

“In some ways it’s all the other way around,” Cooke-Dallin says. “Our methodology for recording is we put everybody in the room at the same time and do freewheels and have a big recording jam. Then we go through later and mine all the best moments.”

Before they hit the stage, he adds, the six members have to go back and learn how to perform the songs live. It’s a process they began experimenting with in 2016.

“That style kind of arose in the late 90s, especially with some of the down-tempo stuff,” Cooke-Dallin notes. “I was hearing some of the styles of that era kind of coming back in vogue again, and having the technical knowledge of how that was done allowed us to work like that.”

He describes Astrocolor as having a backbone of a five-piece funk band, with him going in and doing his thing with synthesizers and electronics. The combo makes for some unique and danceable beats and rhythms, with plenty of room for improvising.

With Cooke-Dallin weaving myriad sounds and beats into a traditional two-guitar, bass, sax and drums lineup, the sextet have a host of new grooves they’ve been working on, he says. While the live show will contain songs familiar to their followers, much of it will be a situation of “see what happens and what works.”

“When we get toward the end of four sets, I’ll just play a beat and call out the key of the song, cut and loop, so the guys can just solo and dance over top of it without no real structure.”

Astrocolor warms up with a Friday night show at The Waverly Pub in Cumberland, then heads to Vancouver for a Nov. 17 show at the Biltmore Cabaret.

Special guests for the Oct. 13 Victoria show include Tyler Rowe, who voiced the hip-hop tracks on Astrocolor III, and Fox Glove, who lent their vocal talents on the track “Push Too Hard.” Opening acts include WMNSTUDIES, Bendy and Lito Ford.

You can purchase tickets online here or stop by Lyle’s Place at 770 Yates St.

editor@mondaymag.com

Just Posted

Region’s 250th Little Free Library installed in Victoria

Greater Victoria now has the highest density of mapped little libraries in the country

PHOTO GALLERY: Cyclists were all smiles during ninth Tour de Victoria

More than 2,100 cyclists participated, locals and visitors alike

Final HarbourCats home game of 2019 happening tonight at RAP

Tickets still available for Game 1 of the West Coast League finals; first pitch at 6:35 p.m.

WINE NOTES: Going gaga over B.C. Gewürztraminer

Robert Moyes offers up some interesting late-summer vino choices

Take your opportunity to sing at the Royal Theatre

Great Canadian Sing debuts Sept. 8 with inspirational music, talented performers, singalong format

For the Love of Fibre: Fibrations 2019 wrapup

Fibre arts celebrated through demonstrations and market showcasing locally made items

Tour de Victoria: Giving you the down low on detours around the region

Thousands of cyclists participating in ninth Tour de Victoria on Saturday

Christopher Auchter’s story headed to the international stage at Toronto International Film Fest

Old Massett totem pole raising revisited in Christopher Auchter’s documentary Now Is The Time

Saanich Peninsula student scores only scholarship for Canadians offered by top U.S. music school

Stelly’s grad Isaiah Carvalhal-Smith and his electric bass off to Boston after successful audition

Yellow Wolf Powwow draws dancers from across Canada

Saanichton event a celebration of Indigenous culture

Victoria-based elephant advocate fighting to end ivory trade

Founder of World Elephant Day hopes to spread awareness, add political pressure

Most Read