10.4.17 // Boston, MA
Photos + Words by Carter Howe
Hailing from Porto, Portugal, RAC (aka André Allen Anjos) is best known for his remixes of indie pop artists’ songs (Foster the People, Surfer Blood, The Shins). However, RAC, short for Remix Artist Collective, is not your run of the mill DJ. His approach sets him apart from others; instead of dropping stiff dance beats around random parts of the original artist’s track—a decision common to fedora-sporting Soundcloud artists—he completely reimagines the original song, opting for a different vibe or mood and creating a clean rework that the original artist would approve of. Many times, the only thing that remains constant in both songs is the vocal track. This style drew the RAC fans who support him today.
However, it’s clear that RAC wants to do more than just remix. He’s finally debuted his second LP, Ego, which is filled with his own original material. It’s a brilliant model that he's worked, because his album is now checkered with fan-favorite vocalists like St. Lucia and K. Flay. While enjoying the pop flavors of those vocalists, fans are able to get a taste of RAC’s own songwriting and production.
Last week, RAC took the stage at the Paradise Rock Club in Boston with his backing band, Speak, and his wife, Liz, on vocals. Backed by flickering neon lighting, the RAC crew powered through a poppy, danceable set, while André did not speak a word the whole time. Their unique setup allowed for the audience to enjoy a diversified vocal experience, as Liz would sing on some songs and the lead singer of Speak would sing others. Perhaps everyone in the crowd thought Speak was RAC, or Liz was RAC, but that in and of itself testifies to Andre’s modesty and brilliance as he remained towards the back of the stage playing guitar. Throughout the night, the crowd was enthused, lightly dancing to all the songs. This continued until the first few beats of RAC’s Odesza remix began pulsing through the room. Liz grabbed the microphone and that was when the crowd truly came alive, singing the lyrics back as loud as they could. The crowd was moving like a sea and smiles spread across the stage. The set concluded with RAC’s hit “Let Go,” and by then the crowd was a fully live creature. RAC is made of magic, and turned Paradise Rock Club into Paradise Dance Club, even if it was just for one night.