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David Byrne, St. Vincent, Zola Jesus, Dev Hynes & more played ‘Contemporary Color’ at Barclays (pics / video)

photos by Amanda Hatfield

St. Vincent / Nelly Furtado, tUnE-yArDs, Dev Hynes / finale
Contemporary Color
Contemporary Color
Contemporary Color

In “Contemporary Color,” a copresentation of Barclays Center in Brooklyn and the Brooklyn Academy of Music, Mr. Byrne has organized collaborations among 10 elite color guard teams and recording artists, including St. Vincent, Nelly Furtado and Devonté Hynes. Between acts, the showcase, performed on Saturday at Barclays Center, included video clips making it clear that for many students, color guard is a way to find like-minded souls in what can be the most harrowing of American experiences: high school.

The idea to pair color guard with live music is an intriguing one, but the results don’t entirely click. One exception was the pairing of Somerville High School in New Jersey with Money Mark and Ad-Rock of the Beastie Boys whose music, not unlike that of a marching band, grew in power. But too much of the music was on the slow side, suffocating the routines and making it apparent that the earnestness of the performers clashed with the musicians who had difficulty shedding their personas. They may have been in bands in high school, but it didn’t feel as if they had ever been band geeks. – [NY Times]

After two shows last week in Toronto, David Byrne brought his music-meets-color-guard “Contemporary Color” extravaganza to Barclays Center on Saturday (6/27) and Sunday (6/28), pairing performers such as St. Vincent, How to Dress Well, Dev Hynes, Ad Rock & Money Mark, tUnE-yArDs, Nelly Furtado and Zola Jesus (performing songs written just for this production) with high school color guard teams. Pictures from Saturday’s performance, plus video of St. Vincent and David Byrne’s performances from Sunday, continue below…


Lucius (with tUnE-yArDs) & Shenendehowa High School

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Ira Glas, Nico Muhly & Alter Ego

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Nelly Furtado (with tUnE-yArDs & Dev Hynes) & Ventures

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St. Vincent & Field of View

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Dev Hynes & Black Watch

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How to Dress Well & Mechanicsburg High School

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Zola Jesus & Brigadiers

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Ad-Rock, Money Mark, & Somerville High School

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David Byrne (with St. Vincent & Lucius) & Les Eclipses

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tUnE-yArDs (with Lucius) & Emanon

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Finale

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