The Blow at the Florida Room, July 2

See the full 18-photo slideshow of The Blow at the Florida Room.

The Blow

With Melissa Dyne

The Florida Room

Saturday, July 2, 2011

Better Than: Red Hot Chili Peppers from the in-house DJ.

Upon entering the Delano Hotel's Florida Room, the divide between the indie-loving hipsters and the members of the South Beach party scene was clear.

The former group sat near the makeshift stage riddled with Louisiana three-piece t-kette's equipment, while the latter was busy booty dancing to the in-house DJ's tunes and buying $16 drinks at the incredibly overpriced bar.

t-kette's energetic set began at around 12:15 as guitarist/vocalist/bassist/drummer Rachel Nederveld applied lipstick and broke into a cover of "Lip Gloss" by Lil Mama that surprisingly grabbed the attention of most of the lounge's patrons. After the impromptu hip-hop session and a reasonable declaration of worry that the clubbers wouldn't like them, they exploded into sugary pop numbers that perfectly matched their shiny shoes and sparkly leggings. The three band members frantically traded instruments between songs, setting the tone for their peppy performance in the otherwise boring basement nightclub.

About halfway through the show, two barely dressed women began grinding on each other directly in front of the stage and t-kette's Allison Bohl joined in on the fun during one of their last few songs, backing that thing up into the two SoBe regulars while non-chalantly strumming her guitar. The set ended with yet another hip-hop cover, as Nederveld periodically checked her iPhone for the lyrics to an Ice-T song.

After about a half-hour break (which consisted of artist Melissa Dyne perfecting her lighting setup and more jams from the DJ), The Blow's Khaela Maricich took the mic and began performing arty electro-pop tunes.

Maricich remained fairly stationary for much of the show, occasionally standing on couches and playing with Melissa's beautiful lighting. One high point of her performance was "Parentheses." Before the song she put on a pair of ridiculous high heels, asking the crowd for tips on how to do so. She broke out of her previous seldom-moving style for this one and danced wildly among the crowd, met with delight in some corners and disdain in others.

Another great moment was signaled by the eruption of a smoke machine. As fog filled the room, Maricich climbed onto a couch and stood silhouetted in front of a yellow light while a fan blew her hair into a beautiful mess.

The night was riddled with nonsense and frustration, however. At one point between songs, a bafflingly inconsiderate girl wandered onto the stage to pose for a photo with the confused Maricich. Later, a booted gal also butted in to whisper something to the singer. A large group of the crowd booed her after a few songs, probably preferring to roll to some bleep-bloop Kings of Leon remix. They also chanted what sounded like "Defense!," for some reason.

The show ended at 2 a.m. with an unannounced interruption by the in-house DJ, who decided he'd had enough and that he should spin some Red Hot Chili Peppers. This move was met with confusion from Khaela, Melissa, and the few fans that actually came to watch the show. But the rude "Californication" continued.

Before calling it a night, Khaela mused on a future return trip to Miami, comparing its chance of success to that of sex's. "Maybe it'll be good, maybe it won't." This time, the bizarre choice of venue and the constantly awful crowd left us with some mighty big blue-balls.

Critic's Notebook

Overheard in the Crowd: "Why the fuck is she changing her shoes?"

Personal Bias: Melissa Dyne's makeshift lighting setup was great for photos, beating that of most real music venues.

-- Alex Broadwell

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