Let’s acknowledge that the way live music has mutated into streaming and videos is undeniably odd. The deafening silence between songs is a crude reminder of the very palpable distance amongst ourselves. But live sessions, while no replacement for the real thing, can provide their own unique pleasure. The following sets all have a pervading sense of atmosphere, whether it’s completely bonkers and off-the-wall or simply acutely intimate and haunting. 

As we move along I’ll be dropping a few hints at some oh snap moments worth checking out, especially in longer sets or if you wanna get a quick taste of everything. 

1) Friggatriscaidecafobia Live Set – Juana Molina

Alright, fair point. Juana Molina has certainly made some gigantic waves way beyond the underground scene. But you know what? Just as she’d spearheaded alternative and experimental music movement way back in the day, she was perhaps one of the first to opt for a totally lysergic at-home live set just 24hs after all shows were banned upon COVID’s arrival.

Oh snap moments: 1) Ca7riel‘s guest appearance (face-melting madlad solo included) and 2) Juana’s hypnotic dance in her backyard as Calculos y Oraculos accompanied her soft and haunting movements. 

2) E-World Tour – Conociendo Rusia

Soft and sultry slow funk and blues vibes are straight-up OOZING out of this tight Conociendo Rusia performance. For the uninitiated, Conociendo Rusia encapsulates the classic argie essence of catchy distorted guitar singer-songwriter tunes while adding a touch of 70s disco fever coupled with some bluesy velvet guitars. What’s truly commendable in this particular live set is how tidy the mix came out.

Oh snap moments: 1) Mateo’s riveting belting scream leading up to the crescendo of La Puerta and 2) Cosas Para Decirte in its entirety.  

3) Miau Trío en Niceto – Miau Trío

Old-timey jazz songs, great performances, and a light-hearted spirit are only some of the elements of this Miau Trio set. With the help of Niceto Club, Miau Trio partook in the admittedly weird experience of playing at an empty venue. Mariana Michi, Rocio Katz, and Rocio Iturralde rocked the crowdless stage with their ever-so-sweet harmonies and playful trumpet singing. We are excited to see if this becomes a trend for independent artists all around the scene. 

Oh snap moments: 1) Their rendition of Old Man Of The Mountain by Cab Calloway and 2) their intro!

4) Susi Pireli at Casa Brandon Live – Susi Pireli

Right off the bat, no. Susi Pireli is not one person. It’s the name of a duo where Los Besos‘ lead singer Paula Trama and Amor Elefante‘s keyboardist Inés Copertino join forces for a dreamy set. One of the best Instagram Live streams out there, precisely because there’s practically no mic popping or any other sound mishaps – which is a common complaint in many IGTV performances. The echoing voices make the small room Susi Pireli are playing sound like a huge reverberating chamber of electronic folk craziness. 

Oh snap moments: 1) Somos Amigas, where Paula’s voice becomes this uplifting beacon of feel-happy vibes (18:40). 2) When Porcelana kicks off with a very Virus sounding drum loop propelling Paula’s croons into a post-punk-ish spoken word section (29:46).

5) Covid Sessions – Joe Venganza

So I know I’m kinda cheating in this last one. It isn’t a live set, really. It is, however, a quarantine session, so it counts. Regardless, Joe Venganza‘s COVID Sessions are truly something worth checking out. I’ve decided to share the very first volume of this ongoing series where Joe treats us to Niñx, a single which meditates on the idea of procreation and how (according to Joe) it is completely selfish if we can’t prevent our offspring from suffering. The intimate performance features a jazzy chord progression and percussive string plucking.

Oh snap moment: Joe’s husky, coarse voice throughout.