This is a cautionary critic's call. You should know that the DJ duo of DFA will perform on Saturday at the District, 35 NE 40th St., Miami; and on Sunday at the Standard Hotel, 40 Island Ave., Miami Beach.
Tim Goldsworthy and James Murphy may give the appearance of latter-day Dolbys -- mad scientists geekily embracing runaway studio technology. But a preponderance of evidence suggests that DFA are actually jerks. A couple years ago, when Canadian experimentalists Death From Above began garnering fans and raves, Murphy and Goldsworthy sued the Montrealers into giving up the handle. (The latter continued performing for another year as Death From Above 1979, finally disbanding in September in the face of endless legal hassling.)
DFA's released-this-week sophomore remix CD, Chapter Two, seriously falters. It's bogged down by an eardrum-shattering version of Junior Senior's "Shake Your Coconuts" and a bloated, perfunctory rendition of Tiga's "Far From Home." The disc eventually improves with tracks from Goldfrapp and Nine Inch Nails, but most people won't be able to listen that long.
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Finally, there are their ties with Poplife, the Saturday party at the District that becomes less distinguishable from Miami Velvet every week. An invitation to the show advises guests that it'll be necessary to "wear a name badge with your porn star name!" to gain admittance. Classy! But there's still motivation to catch one of DFA's upcoming sets this weekend: frequent and longtime collaborator Juan McLean is sharing the bill. McLean, who toiled in obscurity in New York City for nearly two decades with electro pioneers Six Finger Satellite, has recently come into his own. His shows in Miami -- he's DJ'd sets at WMC for the past three sessions -- are galvanizing and peculiarly intimate for a composer whose main subjects are robots and alienation.
Doors open at 10:00 p.m. for both shows. Tickets are $15. Call 305-673-1717 or 305-576-7242 or visit www.astralwerks.com/dfa/ for information. - Jean Carey