It is a highly anticipated night down at the Forum. The Gaslamp Killer, Flying Lotus and Dam Funk sharing one stage in what can only be described as a mini festival set to be full of great music. However you wouldn’t be able to tell when the doors opened at 8 o’clock.
Local Sydney DJs, Jonny Faithand Monkfly opened the night with a chilled out but grooving set. While the crowd was virtually non-existent, it didn’t stop the pair from having their own party on stage. By the last half hour, the Forum had begun to fill up and the crowd was loosening up for the night ahead.
Melbourne based breakbeat producer Opiuo filled in for Hudson Mohawke who was supposed to appear on this tour before breaking his foot in late December. While the loss of Hudson Mohawke was devastating to fans looking forward to his set, Opiou helped ease the pain by putting on an absolute killer set. Full of energy, Opiou mixed in a live element to his DJ set, with effects and percussion thrown in to add to the intensity. Opiou is a one man party who didn’t let the atmosphere die for a second. He was clearly a well thought out replacement because by the end of his hour set, the crowd were hyped and ready for Dam Funk.
Dam Funk was a bit of a stand-out to the rest of the line up, he didn’t entirely fit the billing but he was in no way out of place. The crowd immediately took up his unique brand of electro-funk with open arms. Dam Funk is neck deep in eighties style funk, blended with elements of modern electronic music to bring forth a whirlwind of DJ set with the odd vocal or keytar live mix. High energy and a deep seeded passion for the music he was playing helped make this set one to remember. Though towards the end, things seemed to be dragging on a bit, no one seemed to mind because he genuinely wanted to be on stage as long as he could.
This was the moment I had been waiting for. Flying Lotus took to the stage within minutes of Dam Funk walking off. There was only about 10 minutes the whole night where someone wasn’t performing which meant the vibe never died. The show was a crescendo of great performances, continuously getting better. Now it was at the point most of the crowd was here to see. Flying Lotus took to the stage, flanked by live drums and bass guitar, and immediately kicked off into a non-stop, hard-hitting set. Flying Lotus defies all genres by taking a little bit of everything and putting it together into a musical mind fuck of brilliance. Between conducting his supporting musicians and sequencing music and effects, Flying Lotus knew how to capture the hearts of the crowd. How he wasn’t the head-liner, I didn’t know but I was about to find out.
Stepping on stage to hype up the crowd during the last few tracks of Flying Lotus came The Gaslamp Killer. From the get go, he was head banging around the decks, losing himself in the music. From up close, you could occasionally get a glimpse of him in the light and his eyes looked ready to explode. Start to finish, the Gaslamp Killer’s set was a fire-storm of energy, excitement and all out musical chaos. Jumping around the decks, this set came straight out of left field and erupted in a sea of soulful, psychedelic, dirty tech. The energy in the room rivalled that of The Prodigy and it never stopped. It was a shame that a number of people left after Flying Lotus but the vast majority basked in the intensity that was The Gaslamp Killer.
Playing over his set time, he was asked to finish up repeatedly by venue staff but continued to feed us the hottest new music fresh from L.A. With a shout out to Hudson Mohawke and the return of Flying Lotus to the stage, the night ended with a bang. The Gaslamp Killer even took to the drums for a song while Flying Lotus jumped on the decks. I walked out of that gig in awe of the show that I had just seen. Before we made it out, I overheard someone in the crowd say, “That show right there, is why you listen to good music. Unbelievable.” I couldn’t have agreed more.