Halloween. Recoil. A beautiful club space in downtown Baltimore. The highlights should have been obvious, but before Recoil even took the stage, everyone was buzzing about the quality of the opening bands, Architect and Conjure One.
The former, a creation of the Germany-based Daniel Myer, showcased a energetic beats with a tonal background, and the latter, Conjure One, a creation of Rhys Fulber (formerly of Frontline Assembly), played its ethereal synth. Both played extremely strong sets, and it was a perfect lead-in to Alan Wilder's performance.
Set in front of a giant screen with a vibrant, well-produced slideshow behind them, Alan Wilder and his longstanding friend and associate Paul Kendall filled the club with a feeling of sensory overload; the sharpness of the music contrasted well with the whirlpool of sexual innuendo, political conflict, and 80's-inspired tones that the imagery on the screen flashed out. While there was less dancing than I'd expected for the quick electronic beats of Recoil's latest (and past) creations, the audience was extremely vocal about wanting an encore when Wilder and Kendall left the stage, so they returned to the cheers of the crowd and performed a couple more songs.
Perhaps one of the most pleasing aspects post-show was seeing Wilder signing merch for a long line of people - despite his iconic status in more than one genre of music, he was very easy with people and looked to be enjoying himself.
The night closed with several DJ sets stacked with Depeche Mode tracks, a clear nod to Wilder's past, with the result being a duel feeling of nostalgia and excitement to see what Recoil will do next.