Grand Central was at capacity on Wednesday night for Toro y Moi, which was admittedly a surprise. I was introduced to the singer/producer, Chaz Bundick, only a few months ago and had really started to love the synthy, funky style. In the weeks leading up to the show I’d heard very little hype and wasn’t quite sure what to expect in terms of crowd or vibe. All I knew was that the Carolina native had the backing of a small band and was known for putting on a good show. According to a friend who attended one of their first Miami shows a couple of years ago, they played a perfect set for a mostly empty Bardot.
This time they sounded equally perfect, except their popularity had obviously grown. As evidence to the expanding fan base that has seen a recent collaboration with electro-funk godfathers Chromeo, the crowd’s age ranged from thirties on down to teens with what looked like a few chaperones in the back. Falling somewhere in the middle of that spectrum, we chose a nice roomy spot behind a pillar rather than fighting our way to the center. Not much of a view, but plenty of space to dance. We would get our chance for a closer look at the end of the performance.
After wrapping with an extended curtain call and inviting the audience to party with him upstairs at The Garret for the rest of the night, Chaz quietly signed autographs and posed for pictures with a small crowd that had fortunately lingered behind. Despite our best efforts to avoid the mob throughout the show, we pushed our way through a small pack of admirers for Lia, Product/81’s Art Director extraordinaire, to get chance at a little face-time with Toro y Moi.