Little Dragon fires up First Fridays crowd (with gallery, videos and a Sister Crayon download)


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There were a whole lot of mammals at the Natural History Museum on Friday, and just a Little Dragon.

Little Dragon, the electro-soul quartet from Gothenburg, Sweden, didn’t exactly breathe fire, but with singer Yukimi Nagano cooing and aahing they laid down 45 minutes of ambient grooves that got plenty of the bipeds dancing amid the dioramas in the museum’s Hall of North American Mammals.

The occasion was the opener of the museum’s First Fridays series, which runs monthly through June, and although Little Dragon would play a more unhinged set on Saturday night at the Echoplex, the Swedes brought just enough dusky Møtøwn with them to enchant the big crowd. The music from their 2009 album “Machine Dreams” is veined with subtle textures – many of which were lost in the echoing hall – but Little Dragon kept the set interesting with a lot of bottom end, off-kilter percussion and savvy pacing of singles like “Blinking Pigs,” “Feather” and “Stranger.”

Not so for openers Sister Crayon, the vaguely tribal knob-twiddlers from the Sacramento. They tried valiantly to meld synths, guitars and electro and organic beats into something otherworldly (a feat they pull off, to an extent, on their EP), but on this night that seemed to be as difficult as getting a cellphone signal in the bowels of a 98-year-old museum. The quartet’s debut full-length, “Bellow,” is due in February.

||| Live: First Fridays continues Feb. 4 with Miguel Atwood-Ferguson performing.