Peelander-Yellow brings night of Asian insanity and revelation to Lil Indies

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Fabulous Johnk Wray at Lil Indies - JEN CRAY
  • Jen Cray
  • Fabulous Johnk Wray at Lil Indies
THIS LITTLE UNDERGROUND
Yellow Nite Fever Tour ft. Peelander-Yellow Fabulous Johnk Wray and Musuki Aruvavo Lee, Lil Indies, July 21

The Asian sense of duty is so real it’s famous. So, as a card-carrying member, a trifecta involving (1) something called the Yellow Nite Fever Tour featuring (2) Japanese artists with (3) Peelander-Yellow as the headliner pretty much obligates me. But read on and you’ll see this tour – brought to Orlando by OYG Presents – is an imperative for anyone into interesting music and experience.

When you’ve got one of the founding members of comic-book-sprung-to-life band Peelander-Z in the mix, anything is possible and none of it will be normal or boring. And the Yellow Nite Fever Tour is a fling out to the fringes of live performance.

Peelander-Yellow at Lil Indies - JEN CRAY
  • Jen Cray
  • Peelander-Yellow at Lil Indies
Opening the showcase was Musuki Aruvavo Lee. He played both acoustic and electric guitar, and did so in intriguing ways from freak-folk picking to noisy rock heroics. What he is most, however, is a left-field master of voice.



Musuki Aruvavo Lee at Lil Indies - JEN CRAY
  • Jen Cray
  • Musuki Aruvavo Lee at Lil Indies
Musuki Aruvavo Lee at Lil Indies - JEN CRAY
  • Jen Cray
  • Musuki Aruvavo Lee at Lil Indies
In melodically traditional passages, his singing was kaleidoscopic and arresting. But in his moments of post-linguistic vocalization, he was simply otherworldly.

Musuki Aruvavo Lee at Lil Indies - JEN CRAY
  • Jen Cray
  • Musuki Aruvavo Lee at Lil Indies
Across mews, trills and caterwauls, his startling live brilliance was a fantastical vocal menagerie unto itself. And his performance was a captivating, avant-garde wonder of as much beauty as oddity.


Next up was one-man band Fabulous Johnk Wray, who oozed slick pulp with fringed leather jacket, Wayfarer shades and tall pompadour wig – all black. Attach every single one of his limbs to either a guitar or a drum kit and you’ve got the picture of one cool motherfucker.

Fabulous Johnk Wray at Lil Indies - JEN CRAY
  • Jen Cray
  • Fabulous Johnk Wray at Lil Indies
Fabulous Johnk Wray at Lil Indies - JEN CRAY
  • Jen Cray
  • Fabulous Johnk Wray at Lil Indies
Once he started, all of it was validated. With hot vintage licks, this Rising Sun greaser wielded his guitar like a swashbuckling rifle across a set of cranked blues and early rock & roll fire. And, naturally, he dropped a Link Wray cover.

Fabulous Johnk Wray at Lil Indies - JEN CRAY
  • Jen Cray
  • Fabulous Johnk Wray at Lil Indies
If you’ve been to a Peelander-Z concert – which you absolutely must do at least once in your life – then you know these guys are next-level showmen. But even if you expect a solo show by bandleader Peelander-Yellow to be something extraordinary, it’s still astonishing to see in person what he’s capable of.

Like what his band is famous for, Peelander-Yellow does the kind of all-out live performance that doesn’t just remove the fourth wall but demolishes any concept of walls whatsoever. Instead of a stage, his platform was the entire room and beyond. And instead of a band, he had the whole crowd following him.

Peelander-Yellow at Lil Indies - JEN CRAY
  • Jen Cray
  • Peelander-Yellow at Lil Indies
Like a full-throttle Pied Piper, Peelander-Yellow led the audience party all around the room, onto the bar, out the door, out into the middle of Mills Avenue...

Peelander-Yellow on Mills Avenue - JEN CRAY
  • Jen Cray
  • Peelander-Yellow on Mills Avenue
...  onto a parked van ...

Peelander-Yellow on top of a van, hopefully his - JEN CRAY
  • Jen Cray
  • Peelander-Yellow on top of a van, hopefully his
and into the bathroom.

Peelander-Yellow at Lil Indies - JEN CRAY
  • Jen Cray
  • Peelander-Yellow at Lil Indies

The insanity worked its way into every situation and corner of the room. There were no casual onlookers here. Everyone was involved, no one was spared. Pretty sure a few dates were ruined.

Peelander-Yellow at Lil Indies - JEN CRAY
  • Jen Cray
  • Peelander-Yellow at Lil Indies
Even I couldn’t avoid being sucked into the infectious whirlwind, and I’m better for it. I’ve only seen this kind of live phenomenon at shows by the legendarily interactive likes of Terror Pigeon, Monotonix and Michael Parallax.

Peelander-Yellow at Lil Indies - JEN CRAY
  • Jen Cray
  • Peelander-Yellow at Lil Indies
Peelander-Yellow at Lil Indies - JEN CRAY
  • Jen Cray
  • Peelander-Yellow at Lil Indies
Peelander-Yellow at Lil Indies - JEN CRAY
  • Jen Cray
  • Peelander-Yellow at Lil Indies
But that’s the live genius of Peelander-Yellow. He was the one performing but we became part of the show. Wait, I haven’t even mentioned the music yet, have I? That’s because there wasn’t much of it played amid the breathless procession of crowd antics. And it didn’t even matter. The event may not have been much of a concert per se, but it was maximum show. And though it didn’t include much playing, it was total orchestration. Who needs a band when you can work a room like a madcap, yellow-dressed puppet master?

Follow Bao on Twitter (@baolehuu)
Email Bao: baolehuu@orlandoweekly.com