This past weekend I attended Wireless Festival in London, on Friday and Sunday, so I thought I’d give a mini-review on the acts I seen.
Of course I kicked the weekend off with my fave Iggy Azalea. Firstly, I would just like to confirm that she is absolutely flawless in person and her body is in fact as unreal as it looks in pictures/videos. Although, nobody in that crowd could have claimed she’s only successful due to her looks after watching her set on Friday. Accompanied onstage by dancers, the Aussie rapper created an electric atmosphere as she delivered hit-after-hit – from PU$$Y to Bounce – from her twerk-friendly catalogue. Besides her live renditions of Work and Fancy, the guest appearance from Rita Ora during future single Black Widow was definitely a treat!
After I-G-G-Y stole my heart, Pharrell Williams took to the stage with one of the most enjoyable sets I have ever experienced. In amongst his new material, Pharrell treated everyone to songs from every stage of his career as he paid homage to his N*E*R*D days with a mash-up of She Wants To Move and Lapdance, and revisited his earlier work with The Neptunes on Frontin and Beautiful. Of course, he finished things up with Happy – and it made me realise that it’s not actually that annoying. Vine just ruins popular songs. The best part of it all, however? When he performed Gwen Stefani‘s iconic anthem Hollaback Girl. His efforts to make Gwen come back solo make my life.
On Friday night the chat was all about Kanye West headlining, obviously. He appeared onstage on time – albeit in a diamond mask so that no one could see his face – and rattled through his Yeezus album for the first 40 minutes, which everyone seemed to enjoy more or less. Then things just went downhill. Kanye started ranting about the government, labels, designers, his haters, religion – anything he could scream and shout about, really. The talking session was disguised as a “stream of consciousness” on his Yeezus Tour earlier this year, but on Friday night he yelled for 20 minutes of his scheduled 90-minute set. The crowds booed very loudly, chanted and deserted the main stage as he refused to resume his performance. It was absolutely ridiculous. But. As soon as he finally stopped complaining about all of his money and fame and began Run This Town everybody forgot about what had just happened. After that, he delivered hit-after-hit as he came out with Stronger, The Good Life and – my favourite – All Falls Down. I have never seen so many angry people at a concert before, nor have I witnessed so many people’s attitudes change with the drop of a single beat. The power of Yeezus.
Moving on, Sean Paul was a lot less tedious. There’s not much to say about Sean Paul, I just want to mention the fact that I have now had the pleasure of seeing Sean Paul live. SEAN. PAUL. I may not have understood the majority of what he was saying, but when I did it was absolutely golden. So many white folk shouting “Shake dat ting miz!” in fake Bajan accents. Phenomenal.
Big Boi and André 3000 have returned as Outkast for their 20-year anniversary, performing at elite festivals around the world. Their nostalgic set was definitely for the die-hard fans at the beginning but as soon as Ms Jackson began it was a night for everybody. As André said, Outkast brought the funk to Wireless. I don’t need to say anything about Hey Ya! – you already know how it was.
My favourite act – and biggest surprise – of the weekend was undoubtedly Bruno Mars. I think Locked Out Of Heaven is one of the best songs ever made (genuinely) and I cannot keep my body still during Treasure, but that’s not to say I had high expectations for his live set. Bruno opened his 90-minute set with a reworked uptempo rendition of The Lazy Song and brought everybody to their feet as he set the tone for the night, in which he performed When I Was Your Man and Grenade as the only ballads. His vocals were unbelievably impressive and his moves were like a young Michael Jackson; he provided the perfect end to a brilliant weekend.