Jul 18 2011, 16h55
Out 17 2010, 16h48Sat 16 Oct – Gorillaz, N*E*R*D
Fuck Cancun. Fuck the Dells. Fuck Disneyland. The best vacation spot to stay is Plastic Beach. I experienced this at the UIC Pavilion last night.
Let me start by saying N*E*R*D couldn't have been a more perfect opener for the Gorillaz. At the beginning, there were maybe only a few people (me one of them) standing up. But by the time they hit their final song, Lapdance, I don't think anyone was sitting down. They were great in getting the crowd pumped and ready to be everywhere.
Claps and cheers filled the Pavilion as it didn't take very long for the lights to go out and the Gorillaz strolled on stage. With the brass ensemble present, and Snoop Dogg behind them on the large screen, "Welcome to Plastic Beach" went into the ears of every Gorillaz fan inside. Their setlist continued, and they did not single out Plastic Beach as the only album to perform. They did the fair share of songs from their debut as well as Demon Days, with guests such as Bootie Brown, Rosie Wilson, the ever unmistakable De La Soul, Bashy, Kano, and nobody could forget Bobby Womack and his glass shattering vocals.
Damon was possibly the most energetic frontman I have ever seen live. Jumping around on stage as if he was having a fit, his pants sagging below his ass, his shirt and hair drenched in sweat, you can tell he wasn't just putting on a performance, but he was as lost in the world of Plastic Beach as every fan was there that night. And that is what makes him a truly great frontman. He didn't act like a singer, he actions and smiles almost portrayed that of a fan of the Gorillaz, having as much energy and fun as everyone that night.
There wasn't a soul not moving. Whether they were front row, or up in the balcony, you can see bodies moving to every beat of the song. It was perfect.
The highlight for me was when Bashy and Kano got into the crowd during Clint Eastwood. They were standing on the barrier when Damon joked to flip them over and let them into the crowd. Sure enough, they did just that, and they walked through the first five or six rows (lucky me getting 5th row seats). Before I knew it, Kano was one row in front of me and Bashy was standing directly on my chair. I stood up on the chair next to me and jammed with him, and he looked my way and gave me a hug, knowing that the performers themselves were having as much fun as the fans. Seconds later tons of fans in the isles got on top of their chairs to jam with Bashy and Kano, Damon grinning as he looked on.
As for the videos playing behind the band, you could get as lost in them as you could the music. Music Videos, Storyboards, small skits of the band being trapped backstage. It was all completely fitting for the music. And even more perfectly, it was all in sync. As Damon sang live, 2D's lipped along in the video. As Rosie Wilson belted out the vocals for songs such as 19-2000 and DARE, Noodle was swinging her hips and belting along in the back. Russell never missed a beat. And frankly, Murdoc's bass went along so perfectly, you could swear for those two hours that he wasn't a created character, but yet actually on stage plucking those low chords.
Plastic Beach is the destination to be.