Words by Jordan Tucker
On Friday night Thebarton Theatre hosted a gig that was small, but powerful. With Collarbones, Just A Gent, Yung Lean and Baauer bringing down the house.
The night began with Sydney's Marcus Whale and Adelaide's Travis Cook also known as "Collarbones" and their brand of dreamy electro pop. The crowd wasn't a huge turnout, although as this was the opening act, one could assume people would flood in more during the night.
Next up was the 19-year-old EDM producer from Newcastle, Just A Gent. Being a late addition to the lineup, I wasn't that familiar with his music other than his cover of Kid Cudi's 'Day N' Nite' on triple j's "Like a Version". Just A Gent was the replacement act for UK grime rapper Stormzy, which many fans where clearly disappointed that he couldn't make it, the crowd was still small, with only a quarter of the venue filled. But this didn't stop or phase Just A Gent from playing a well rounded, beat heavy DJ set, with remixes of John Farnham's 'You're The Voice' getting the whole crowd signing along, the wound from Stormzy was somewhat healed. Overall his set brought some great dub, trap and future bass tracks that really got the crowd into the groove.
Third to play was Swedish cloud rapper Yung Lean, the guy that spawned many memes and the movement/aesthetic known as "Sadboys". Lean performed alongside his crew Bladee and Yung Sherman bringing out songs from his latest album Warlord against tracks from his last two albums Unknown Memory and Unknown Death 2002. The crowd seemed to expand a lot more for Lean, as it became obvious those that kept their tickets were here for him, they chanted lyrics back as Lean rapped on stage. A major standout for his for me was the visuals presented behind them, which old school computer generated graphics to repeated images akin to an almost dark medieval look (I think one used the Balrog from a Lord of the Rings game trailer) which fit perfectly to his style and look he portrays nowadays. His set really resonated with the crowd and was a highlight of the night.
Last up was American DJ Baauer, perhaps best known for his viral hit song 'Harlem Shake'. However Baauer proved tonight that he was more than merely someone responsible for a meme, but a trap DJ that held nothing back and hit everyone in the theatre with stomach-hitting bass. His set was full of future trap and hard hitting bass beats from his latest offering from March this year Aa. The numbers in the crowd where still steady but still not as large as one would hope, with a few people here and there trimming off after Lean.
The night was an interesting one, from new acts to some that everyone knows, it was really enjoyable and I was glad to not refund it.