Halloween, a holiday inspired by the grateful dead, can make those of us who are gratefully alive reflect on, and revel in, the pleasures of the temporal realm we inhabit.
In Los Angeles, one of those fleeting seasonal gifts is KCRW-FM (89.9)'s annual Masquerade dance party. On Saturday, the costumed bacchanal took over the Legendary Park Plaza hotel -- built in 1925 and overlooking MacArthur Park -- with a musical lineup that included Moby, Mariachi El Bronx, Dengue Fever, Milagres and the Santa Monica-based radio station's own gifted mash-up artists (Jason Bentley, Liza Richardson, Chris Douridas, et al).
Roaming the Art Deco hotel, patrons dressed as zombies, airline stewardesses, Black Swans, Travis Bickle and Cap'n Crunch (among many, many other guises), swigged drinks and sampled tunes across a wide sound spectrum, spaced across various lounges and ballrooms on two floors.
One of the evening's early revelations was Milagres, a Brooklyn-based band that, after changing its name and reshuffling personnel, deserves to find a wide audience for its ethereal, haunting compositions such as "Halfway." Kyle Wilson, the group's lead singer and principal tunesmith, hits high notes with the breathy eroticism of a young Prince, while his bandmates assemble a sophisticated sonic skeleton that evokes Radiohead and Orchestral Manoeuvres in the Dark.