Date: October 2001
From: The La Music Scene
Sacha Sacket Indulges Crowd at The Whisky-a-Go-Go
by Kim Garrison
The doors at the Whisky-a-Go-Go opened at 8 p.m. and people piled in swiftly, while those still waiting in line heard the first notes of the sound check from Sacha Sacket. As the crowd shuffled in, arrivers were greeted with Sacha promptly beginning his set with a quick hello and an acknowledgement that he wanted to start immediately so that he could play his full set. Onlookers continued their conversations as Sacha began. With his guitarist on stage, he took to playing his keyboard. The rushed entrance of guests and hurried starting time layered the Whisky with an initial air of anticipation, and an obvious look of frazzled nerves and unsettled energy from the two men on stage. But from the very beginning, Sacha's first song was born with the sound of pounding keys and an intensity that magnetized most of the eyes in the audience towards the stage. What quieted most of the buzz in the audience and caused all ears to attune to the two performing was the explosion of bass and tabla beats that rose from the stage as the opening song, "Primordial," emerged. In addition to this Middle Eastern electronic fusion was a fiery belly dancer who added a rhythm and pulse to the song, as well as Sacha's potent vocals which demanded a listening ear; there was no doubt where all eyes were at that moment.
What captured the audience throughout the show was Sacha's ability to swim gracefully between rock electronica and intense piano compositions, telling tales of "Color" and "Battleship." His mythic songwriting ability tells universal stories of oppression and struggle with a taste of spiritual intent channeled through honest personal experience. The vulnerable expression of "So Blond" exposed this songwriter as not just a beat freak rocker but a composer of sounds and stories which transcend personal experience. Sacha created a space for self expression that not only entertained the audience but pushed to expand each listener's experience of the music. This was not a show that could be written off as been there, done that. Sacha's unique sound and songwriting is infused with a spirit all its own and cannot be branded as any particular genre or easily compared to other contemporary artists.
Upon realizing he would not have time to finish his full set, Sacha announced that he was going to sing "Orion" (though he wasn't planning on it), a song inspired by his time spent in New York. It is this song, in particular, that exposed the emotions and vocals of this musician, a soulful sound that would make even Thom Yorke an avid fan. Announcing his final song elicited disappointed caterwauls from the crowd, as Sacha delivered one last round of powerful lyrics and vocal soul in "The African of 1963." This brought out once more the gypsy belly dancer, and more animation by guitarist Scott. This being his first major show since the release of his album Alabaster Flesh, Sacha showcased not only his lyrical and vocal presence but his ability to capture an audience. The show was a raw mixture of bared emotion steeped in stripped down instrumentation, and a full-on rocking out of heavy guitar chords, piano, and danceable beats. Sacha proved to his rapt audience the soulful control and spirit behind his voice, beats and energetic piano by painting a collage of musical and emotional artistry. Keep your eyes and ears on this one, an artist with a voice and the talent to take us all on a journey through sound, spirit,
rhythmic melody and beats.