Is it just me, or has the next big thing conversation been relatively slow this year? Usually by mid-summer, the prattle over wholl be the next Adele, Kings of Leon, or Sleigh Bells reaches a fever pitch, but 2012 has been relatively slow in that respect. Enter Icona Pop (AKA Aino Jawo and Caroline Hjelt). The Swedish duo finished up a three-show run in NYC on Wednesday night with a late set at Santos Party House. The first two shows were more exclusive events tied to New Yorks Fashion Week, leaving this last hurrah of sorts the most open to the general public.
Despite this, the crowd was decidedly more fashion forward that I might have expected, leaving me feeling a bit underdressed in my ratty old Adidas sneakers and Gap t-shirt (retail: $16). I wondered how much of the sold out audience were there for the music, and how many were simply there to be there. However, once the dub-heavy pre-show music died down, those fears quickly dispelled.
As Jawo and Hjelt took the stage, PBRs in hand, they proceeded to make the absolute most out of the three songs they have released since forming earlier this year. The crowd was more than understanding of the bands limited catalog, and was ready and willing to dance their hearts out for everything Icona Pop had to offer. With a table set up mid-stage full of laptops and electronic gadgets, the duo came off as less Robyn and more Grimes. The bass was jacked up to 11 for the entirety of the 25-minute set, rattling the floor and every bone in my body in the best way possible.
I wanna eat you all! Hjelt said in a thick Swedish accent halfway into the performance. The gratitude was undoubtedly genuine, and prompted the two budding starlets to jump off stage and enter the crowd guerilla-style for the grand finale, I Love It. The track, rightfully touted by many as one of the standout jams of the summer, lost none of its irresistible glam in a live setting (just stop what youre doing right now and listen to this song).
At this point, the dance party swelled into a full on rave. As Jawo and Hjelt belted out Youre from the seventies, but Im a 90s bitch, it served as a nice climax to the night. Even watching from the side of the stage, I found it hard to keep my feet on the ground and my hands my by my sides, despite the fact I was neither born in the 90s or consider myself a bitch. For their encore, they reprised a couple verses of I Love It before leaving the stage as quickly as they came. Itll likely be until at least next year before we see a full length from Icona Pop, but if Wednesday night was any indication, the wait will be worth it.