BY: CLARE SAUSEN // In the sold-out Lincoln Theatre, Nathan Fielder came out on stage to the sound of Lana Del Rey’s hit song Born to Die. In his infamous monotone, he began to sing the tune in the most uncomfortable way one could possibly imagine. He stood with hands by his side and kept his eyes fixed on the stage below him the entire time.
After this very Fielder-eqsue opening, he began to crack improvised jokes about the specific crowd—from the unruly air vent crawling into the box seats to the fact that Simple Plan had played the venue the night before (whose songs feel “like they’re speaking directly to me”).
SAMANTHA HARDY // Both women, men and everyone between and beyond put on their best heels for the show. Dark rimmed eyes, bright lips and glitter made up the sea of individuals facing the stage waiting for Perfume Genius to start. The crowd was heavily concentrated on the ground floor. The outfits were bold and bright. Many people were here to make statements, to be themselves.
Wearing a corset, Mike Hadreas, under the moniker, Perfume Genius comes out. Hadreas stands in the middle with two men beside them and one in back on the drums. The stage was simple. It was mostly dark with deep colored lighting. It was also adorned with trees and leaves, emulating some sort of naturalistic environment, perhaps a jungle.
CLAIRE KOSTOHRYZ // On May 2, Rostam Batmanglij debuted his upcoming solo album at the 9:30 Club in Washington, D.C. He sang and occasionally played guitar on stage with a string quartet to accompany him. Batmanglij came out onstage as D.C. welcomed him back, and he clicked play on his MacBook. Graphics appeared on the projector screen behind him that displayed different designs he had created. They swirled and moved with the music, flowing and striking at every beat. The audience was extremely focused to see if Batmanglij was going to be a continuation of Vampire Weekend or try and distance himself from the indie pop genre.
For half an hour this past Friday, the sidewalk outside Songbyrd Music House and Café was a wash of lipstick, denim jackets, top knot buns, and wire rimmed glasses. Women of all shapes, sizes, and colors lined the street, waiting to get their ticket to see Princess Nokia’s (a NYC rapper’s) late show. “It’s so exciting to see this much style in D.C.” the woman behind me commented.
I quickly realized in joining the crowd that this would be a hip-hop performance for more than the average cis male, hip-hop loving audience—a type of show that is becoming more common but is still difficult to find. Upon setting foot in Songbyrd, I could immediately feel the evening’s subtle fem-respecting energy; the mixings of a female DJ welcomed me inside, playing Kendrick’s recent “Humble” followed shortly by Kamaiyah’s “N****s.” Continue reading “Princess Nokia @ Songbyrd”