Majorly exuberant

Spencer Doar


The Major Lazer show on Wednesday night was the first time I’ve seen multiple stage hands repeatedly rush the stage to wipe down sweat of performers and audience participants like some roadie NBA ball boys.  It was a steamy night in the Frist Avenue main room that saw Diplo, Major Lazer’s mastermind DJ/producer, shed his suit over the course of lengthy set and exhort the crowd to do the same.  (In fact, it might have also been the only time where I actually wondered if they’d ever stop playing since the constantly movement-inducing show was making my bad knee act up).  

Diplo and his cronies brought a little bit of everything: A crowd-surf enabling gerbil ball, a light show, girls pulled on stage to shake their rears in a dance contest, vuvuzelas thrown to the crowd, an insanely talented vivacious dancer, confetti guns and an eponymous costumed Major

Diplo rotated who manned the DJ helm, allowing for constant in-track hype and accompaniment—plus their ever-present, aforementioned dancer (kinda NSFW—this same thing happened to some dude from the crowd).  Their wall of amps, stacked into a center-stage fortress tower, allowed for high visibility and better blocking (if that phrase can be applied to musicians onstage).  It must be quite a luxury to be able to party to your own music while simultaneously performing.

But they also worked in plenty of mixes of recognizable tracks, since it was primarily a DJ show.  The only downside was the middle of the set got a little bogged down in dubbiness, which kind of altered the dance-hall vibe that I’d hoped they’d cultivate consistently throughout.  Otherwise it was one of those shows where you were grateful to step outside and have your body blasted by Arctic winds—it was a necessary, reality-inducing shock after two hours of bewildering, booty-shaking sensory overdrive. 

Add in another two hours of openers, including an entertaining Chief Keef-laced set by Lunice, and you had one helluva night.