BROCKHAMPTON IN REVIEW - 11/30 Masonic Temple

On the 30th of November, the worlds’ greatest boyband took the stage at the masonic temple in Detroit for their ‘HEAVEN BELONGS TO YOU’ tour. BROCKHAMPTON is a group comprised of 13 (!!) members, 6 of which appear on stage in the performance (the other members focusing on production, photography, design, and other behind the stage things). As one of the staples of the indie, ‘new wave’ scene, the appeal of these guys in a word is their diversity. The group origionates from all different walks of life, black, white, gay, straight, American, European, Carribian, the boys have a wide range of influences and stories to tell, which keeps their content fresh and is a large reason for the cult like fan base they have aquired. This diversity was similarly reflected in the audience, as we waited in the freezing cold for well over an hour before the show, there were so many visibly unique groups of young kids finding common ground with viewing music that they could connect to; I have never seen such a wide range of people at a show before, it was really incredible to be a part of that crowd, and something that not many other acts can pull off. 

Once the wait was finally over, opening acts 100 gecs and Slowthai, an experimental/electronic band and British rapper respectively gave their performances. I was not familiar with these two acts before the show, but I was pleasantly surprised. BROCKHAMPTON clearly wanted openers that would establish the energy for their set, and these two certainly did that, their crowd involvement and stage presence were both great, they kept the energy in the building and certainly gained more than a few fans that night. 

After a suspenseful 15 minutes after Slowthai’s performance, the lights went out, the curtain dropped, and the beat to ‘ST. PERCY’ blared in the speakers. For the next hour and a half, BROCKHAMPTON provided one of the most fun and energetic concert experiences I have ever seen. Artists Kevin Abstract, Matt Champion, Dom McLennon, Joba, Merlyn, and Bearface all brought their own unique style to the performance, somehow all sticking out yet complementing each other perfectly. Mirrors covered the stage to make for an amazing use of lights throughout the whole performance. Mirrors surrounded the stage on all sides topped off by three massive cross shaped mirrors overhead to go along with the themes of their latest work of questioning where they find themselves with concepts like religion and heaven. It was beautiful and complemented the mood perfectly. The boys played a majority of their new album ‘GINGER’, and, much to the excitement of the audience, played several songs off of their debut ‘Saturation’ trilogy. They expressed their range through the setlist, bouncing from emotional ballads like ‘BLEACH’, ‘NO HALO’ and ‘LOVE ME FOR LIFE’ to bangers like ‘BOOGIE’ and ‘I BEEN BORN AGAIN’ to fun sing along songs like ‘GOLD’, ‘1999 WILDFIRE’ and ‘SUGAR’. New renditions of nearly every song kept things interesting for new fans and old, and their crowd engagement, led by Kevin Abstract, was impeccable. There was never a dull moment, BROCKHAMPTON has only been in the indie limelight for about 2 years now, but after this tour, one thing is clear: they have mastered the art of performing.

 

By Michael Barnes