Larva at Til Two, San Diego, CA, 06/08/2023

In truth, I knew nothing about Larva before attending this show. But I had faith in the good folks running Club Rapture that they wouldn’t steer me wrong. Turns out that this Barcelona, Spain export has been doing its thing since 1998 starting with the duo of InqUest and Blackend as Morbid Mind. Officially rechristened Larva in 2003, InqUest continues to pursue dark themes with more of a focus on social issues.

Go-Go dancer Katana alongside DJ SinDrome

I was impressed with the turnout for a Thursday night. Those more informed than myself, aka the local Larva fans, turned out to show their support. It was extremely helpful that DJs Barbie Serk and SinDrome did an excellent job of warming up the crowd with some the best mixes I’ve heard at Til Two for some time.

DJ Barbie Serk

By showtime, the dance floor was dense with dancers eager to get down. I can see why, Larva’s sound is nothing if not danceable, with a keen sense of melody and floating synth leads that made me think of early Gary Numan or later Ultravox.

As a live act, Larva’s energy is contagious. This one-man show was truly engaging; often jumping offstage to dance with fans, exchange hugs, and I think I saw him give several people playful noogies. When onstage, he would gyrate, flex, and contort himself wildly while going wherever the vibe of the moment took him. New converts like myself were easily won over.

After the encore, there was an additional surprise in store as everyone joined in to wish Larva a happy birthday. And while there was a wee bit of a language barrier to contend with, he clearly got the gist and expressed his appreciation to everyone present.

Whether you understand Spanish or not, you would do well to check out Larva’s respectable catalog or take advantage of a tour date in your town. I’m glad I did.

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