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Deafheaven's George Clarke at the Rock and Roll Hotel in Washington, DC (Bob )

Question Of The Week: Who Is The Most Intense Performer You've Ever Seen?

Jul 1, 2013

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Bob Boilen

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Last night I witnessed an intense and commanding performance. The band was Deafheaven and lead singer George Clarke kept me riveted. Here's what it looked like captured by my phone:

Now this is not a vocal style I gravitate toward, but something happened last night that I don't usually see in a performance: two opposing emotions were coming at me at the same moment. There was fierce venom from George Clarke and, believe it or not, a kind of grace when he wasn't lurching or screaming (you can see it near the end of the video, when he stretches his hands out over the audience). I kept expecting to feel agitated and instead watching the catharsis felt oddly heartwarming. I also madly loved the abrupt shifts in the music — explosive, pensive and beautiful.

So tell me, who's the most intense performer in your memory? And what was it that made it unforgettable? We asked that question on our Facebook page and got dozens of great replies. Here's a Spotify playlist featuring a few of our favorites.

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