Dan Whitford, lead vocalist of Cut Copy, is the guy you want at your party. The way he bounces around the stage, you get the sense that he's the guy bringing the energy on the dance floor, busting some pretty sweet moves whether he's swallowed up by the crowd or all by his lonesome. And if that's infectious in a crowd of strangers, imagine how it is when Whitford is on stage and thousands of his screaming, neon- and flannel-wearing fans have packed the Ogden to capacity.
Photos: Cut Copy at the Ogden
Those fans were so rabid for Cut Copy that it didn't take much from openers Midnight Magic and Washed Out to get everyone warmed up and dancing. Washed Out, in particular, has garnered some critical acclaim and its own sizable fan base in the past few months, and much of the audience had some familiarity with the group, dancing along frenetically even though the band's members were a little awkward on stage.
The fans took it to the proverbial eleven when Cut Copy finally took the stage, donning their usual button-up long-sleeved shirts and well-tailored pants, making them look a little like financial analysts rocking out on stage. The band opened strong, too, strobe lights pulsing to one of their newest tracks, "Take Me Over," and then the guys took it up a notch, moving right into poppy and popular "Feel the Love."
At its inception, Cut Copy was Australian-born Whitford's one-man act. In 2003, he brought in more members -- including current guitarist Tim Hoey and current drummer Mitchell Scott -- and in 2004, the band released Bright Like Neon Love. It was the followup, In Ghost Colours, that really launched the group, though; the dance-y, electronic synths were dosed with plenty of pop melody, and it sent the group to the top of the charts in Australia plus garnered them attention around the world.
It was from that album that Cut Copy drew most of its set last night, getting the crowd jumping in unison to the bouncy "Lights and Music," singing the oo-ooo-ooo's to "Feel the Love," and throwing hands in the air to "Hearts on Fire." But the band also sprinkled in a few tracks from its most recent album, Zonoscope, which was released earlier this year, as well as its debut. And while the crowd was most enthusiastic about the In Ghost Colours hits, Whitford -- aided by a slick colored lighting scheme and strobe lights -- had no trouble keeping the energy up for the duration. This crowd had come for a dance party, and by God, it got a dance party.
Photos: Cut Copy at the Ogden.
Strangely, though, the set ended anti-climactically after a long instrumental interlude, which made the crowd howl and stomp insanely for an encore. Cut Copy obliged with a couple more songs, including "Where I'm Going" and another crowd favorite, "Need You Now." And then, as the lights mimicked a starscape, Whitford left the dance floor and forced the rest of us to do the same.
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Personal Bias: I once strongly considered flying across the country to catch a Cut Copy show. One of my very favorite groups to see live. Random Detail: Some of the merch? Onesies for babies. By the way: Both bands had signed copies of their album available for purchase. Washed Out's was $30, and Cut Copy's was $25.