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Calvin Johnson Spins in Seattle

The Halo Bender makes happening beats for narcotic crowd at Chop Suey.

He’s a revered college-rock icon as a musician, producer, DJ and label head. His deadpan monotone voice and blues-mired guitar elicits a nostalgic assault upon the listener. He’s unleashed the lo-fi in Beat Happening, brought the funk in Dub Narcotic Sound System and spun softly swirling melodies in the Halo Benders.

So it should come as no surprise that Calvin Johnson took his Selector Dub Narcotic project out for a spin last night –DJ style – for Club Pop at Chop Suey. Is there anything this guy can’t do?

Despite a few rough transitions between songs and a somewhat unforgiving all-ages crowd that wasn’t entirely into his vibe, Calvin confidently, and blissfully, held his own. He seemed pretty impervious to any crowd ambivalence, and just kept spinning and dancing away.

And for the most part, it was indeed a pleasure last night to see the creator at work. On a dance night that challenged Calvin to blend his reggae and Motown jams in between book-ended electronica and house sets, Club Pop was no real foe. His set was fresh, abrupt, even raucous. Thumping beats, coupled with his own exuberant movements, revealed a fervent, unstoppable musician who is terminally in love with music. And that was reason enough to dance right along with him.

We Asked: Over his long musical career, Calvin Johnson has worked with countless bands and musicians. Who would you like to see him collaborate with next?

Read the fans’ answers >>
More photos from this show >>

We Asked: “Over his long musical career, Calvin Johnson has worked with many recording artists from Dub Narcotic Sound System to Halo Benders and beyond. Who would you like to see him work with next?.”

Back to the story >>
More photos from this show >>

Calvin Johnson / Photo by Alex Crick

DJs Recess and Reflex / Photo by Alex Crick

Zombie Nation / Photo by Alex Crick

Calvin Johnson / Photo by Alex Crick

Calvin Johnson / Photo by Alex Crick

Photo byAlex Crick

Photo by Alex Crick

Photo by Alex Crick

Back to the story >>
Read the fans’ answers >>