Trending
MOST READ
SAPD Issues Thousands of Tickets for Homelessness

SAPD Issues Thousands of Tickets for Homelessness

News: Data and records obtained by the Current show that between January 1, 2013, and early October of this year the San Antonio... By Alexa Garcia-Ditta and Elaine Wolff 10/22/2014
Alamo Ice House Brings Hill Country to Downtown

Alamo Ice House Brings Hill Country to Downtown

Food & Drink: There was a special kind of draw at Alamo Ice House on a recent Tuesday evening. A handful of weeks after opening its... By Jessica Elizarraras 10/22/2014

Best Local Artist

Best of SA 2013: 4/24/2013
6 Sinfully Good Grilled Cheese Sandwiches in SA

6 Sinfully Good Grilled Cheese Sandwiches in SA

Food & Drink: Cheesy Jane’s. Multiple locations, cheesyjanes.com. If the name is any indicator, this San Antonio staple doesn’t mess around when it comes to... By Tommie Ethington 10/22/2014
Easy Green: 10 quick ways to make money in college

Easy Green: 10 quick ways to make money in college

College Issue 2014: Sell clothes. Plato’s Closet is a great place to take your gently worn apparel in exchange for cold, hard cash. They accept clothes, shoes and... By Brittany Minor 8/18/2014
Calendar

Search hundreds of restaurants in our database.

Search hundreds of clubs in our database.

Follow us on Instagram @sacurrent

Print Email

Live & Local

Live & Local: Ernest Gonzales

Photo: Erik Gustafson, License: N/A

Erik Gustafson

Ernest Gonzales last week, at a theater near you.


Ernest Gonzales
Wed, Jan 18
Alamo Drafthouse Park North

How do you make headphone music into an interesting live experience? Ernest Gonzales (aka Mexicans with Guns) seems to have considered this at length before staging the release show for his latest album, Natural Traits. His solution — to rent out a theater at the Alamo Drafthouse Park North — was an especially shrewd one, allowing for the kind of sit-down, all-immersive experience that his chosen style of ambient electronica simply cannot receive at a traditional club. By the time he started, the place was almost packed.

After opening sets by Merykid and DJs Aaron Peña and Nick Ruiz, Gonzales' long-time pal and District 1 Councilman Diego Bernal offered some warm words before inviting Gonzales to the mixer. From the opening beats of "The Prudence of Evolution," Natural Traits opener, it was clear that the decision to release under his own name rather than the more well known Mexicans with Guns handle was a strictly stylistic choice. Stripped of the more overt Mexican influences that characterize his MWG output, Natural Traits is steeped in traditional electronica sounds — four-on-the-floor beats, swirling synths — with Gonzales adding personal touches in the form of guitar overdubs and other analog instrumentation. It's a patient release, with several tracks slowly burning to understated crescendos, and most never peaking at all in the traditional sense. No traditional club setting could have demanded the sort of attention of listeners that music this moody, detailed, and un-flashy demands. Supplemented by custom visuals featuring appropriately trippy footage — blooming mushrooms, shifting fractals, slow-motion T. rexes — the experience was even more immersive, with the audience responding in kind with the sort of sustained attention one only sees now at, well, movie theaters.

Roughly 40 minutes later, Natural Traits concluded, the audience slow to shake off a palpable feeling of hypnosis (helped along in no small part by Gonzales' expert live mixing, which kept the transitions between pieces seamless). After a warm reception, Gonzales offered thanks and hopeful hints that more theater shows would follow. If there was any disappointment, it was that Gonzales and crew were unable to utilize the theater's sound system; I can only imagine how this thing would have sounded with the full surround sound.

We welcome user discussion on our site, under the following guidelines:

To comment you must first create a profile and sign-in with a verified DISQUS account or social network ID. Sign up here.

Comments in violation of the rules will be denied, and repeat violators will be banned. Please help police the community by flagging offensive comments for our moderators to review. By posting a comment, you agree to our full terms and conditions. Click here to read terms and conditions.
comments powered by Disqus