Brockhampton Vogue Theatre, Vancouver BC, February 26
Published Feb 27, 2018The "best boy band since One Direction" — Los Angeles-based Brockhampton — delivered an unpredictable and impassioned set to a devoted all ages crowd at Vancouver's Vogue Theatre last night. Dressed in their iconic orange jumpsuits and performing on a stage strewn with swivel chairs, and a couch with traffic lights on either side of it, the group struck a lasting image from the beginning — which unexpectedly began half-an-hour earlier than scheduled.
This was a theme throughout the night, one that included a fan named Divine joining the group onstage to sit on their couch, as well as a walk-off by founding member Kevin Abstract (he and the rest of the group did return). The group tore through numbers from their acclaimed Saturation trilogy, encouraging the young crowd to continue opening up mosh pits. However, when the energy was turned down a notch, Brockhampton shone.
The downtempo "Bleach," from Saturation III, and its infectious hook led to the group requesting the audience to sing its refrains repeatedly, ending the song in a truly beautiful manner. A tenderness was welcomed when Bearface picked up the lone electric guitar onstage to lead the crowd in "Summer" and "Team," timeless, melodic numbers reminiscent of Daniel Caesar.
For a group that totals 14 members, Brockhampton are remarkably capable of trading off lines and moving as a unit — one with an ever-revolving cast of multitalented individuals. The members would rest on the stage's furniture in between their energetic deliveries — rapping, singing, and demanding more from a crowd that was already frantically in tune with them. They harnessed the groove of "Sweet," delivering its lines with prowess amidst the track's minimal yet danceable production. Fans took over singing the chorus: "Twistin' me up like licorice…"
Striking a balance between melodic samples and bass-heavy, vitriolic rap on "Bump" riled up attendees, while indulging lovers of pop hooks. The group transformed pop heavy "Hottie" into a sweet yet intensified number — the crowd going all out during the drop. By the time the audience were calling for an encore, the floor had burst into an impromptu rendition of "O Canada," yet another surprise on a varied night.