It was a tight squeeze at U Street Music Hall late Wednesday night where Barcelona DJ-producer John Talabot was making his stateside debut. But for many, the gig provided another first. It was quiet enough on the U Hall dance floor for intimate chit-chat.

John Talabot — a quiet night at U Street Music Hall? (Photo by Chris Richards)

Was it? Sorta. I love feeling bass frequencies vibrate my guts as much as the next person. But it also seemed like Talabot was asking us to pay closer attention to the contours, the texture, the feel. That’s rare. Most DJs are fine with treating us like the dude in the old Maxell commercial.

In a world where everything feels cranked up to 11, Talabot’s set was a riddle. Its biggest shortcoming was also its greatest charm.