Editor’s note: this show was so epic, we doubled up on writers and photographers (teamwork!):
All of DC’s best, brightest, and most promising young people crowded into 9:30 Club Wednesday night to witness something quite…remarkable, a South African hip-hop act that is the musical equivalent of 4loko –It’s pretty gross, you know you shouldn’t be drinking it, but you do anyway because on some level, it’s genius…
But, lets start at the beggining….
Hide your kids, hide your wife, hide your husband… Within minutes of Rye Rye blasting off on the 930 Club stage, I got txts from boys and girls alike who wanted to race me in proposing to the Baltimore club queen throne’s heir apparent. Clad appropriately in tights, neon running jacket and sneakers, we were all ready to dive into the Rye Rye workout. With a DJ in tow and 3 dreadlocked, diesel backup dancers rocking matching tanks (well, 2.5 tanks, 1 was half mesh; take note, artists – backup dancers fucking rule) she tore into a flurry of material from the past 2 years and Go! Pop! Bang!, your favorite party album come January. She rode the beats effortlessly with a machine gun flow, taking a break only to drop it to the ground for routines that would bring a tear to 90s RnB fans everywhere.
MIA assisted Bang got the response you’d assume it would and, when Diplo collaboration Whassup Whassup dropped, we’d officially descended into dance floor freak show mayhem. As much love as she was getting, she threw it right back, shouting out DC with an infectious grin from start to finish. No mean mugging, just the flesh and blood embodiment of lead single Sunshine. An addictive mix of backyard bbq and schoolyard charm, the crowd dutifully and capably handled the MIA hook. I swear I saw some girls jump roping in the back but maybe that was the Dodge City talking to me. Her dancers got their shine on too, peacocking individually, shirtless and glistening to the front of the stage for fancy footwork clinics while she stood by beaming. Even at Rye Rye’s most unabashedly boastful, you have to nod in agreement that she’ll take your man, your girl, your seat at the dinner table, ANYTHING SHE WANTS with that smile. And you’d be fine with it. Get it Rye Rye, indeed.
Have you ever wondered what it would be like to watch a strange tatted man dressed only in Pink Floyd boxers, hip thrust, in a manner that uh accentuated his sizeable (euphemism for package) on stage next to a strangely tiny, mulleted blond woman in skintight gold pants? Well, as you might expect, it’s epically entertaining.
Ninja, Yo-Landi , and DJ Hi-Tek, the three badass-weirdoes that make up the Zef –style South African trio Die Antwoord, are “poor but fancy,” and also awesome-to-witness exhibitionists.
Shivering with anticipation, we waited for the aliens….The lights dimmed …there was weird chanting and projections of a dude with progeria syndrome…and then out came the DJ, wearing a full-body man-bear-monster suit. He dropped a few beats and then Ninja and tiny little Yo-Landi crept on stage -both in sinister bathrobe hoodies. They started the night off with “Enter the Ninja,” and “Wat Pomp” .”– Yo f**k the system, I own my own system.”–word.
It was totally amusing to watch those freaks get way into it and deliver some dirty dirty rap gems. It’s no wonder they’re taking over the interwebs. Yo-Landi’s cute-creepy rap in “In your Face,” sounded sick, and she surprised us with gold-booty pants for “Rich Bitch.”
Ninja wasted no time in getting mostly naked. He stripped down to those flattering boxers from “Zef Side” just before busting out “Evil Boy,” a song about sad hurting penises. Next up was “Beat Boy,” a song about… just Google the lyrics. Ok, now imagine that song, performed live by a guy who looks like a mental patient with a bad meth habit and a box cut. Yeah, it was so gross, cool, and perfect.
The encore included-“Doosdronk” a little number about drinking…I think. It seemed to rile up the crowd and we were all inspired to knock back a few more. If only there had been 4loko…
Ninja announced at one point during the night “only god can touch me I’m a bad boy,” a pretty accurate statement given the fact that even if Die Antwoord is “fake” not many of their fans seem to care. What does it mean to be authentic anyway? So what if Die Antwoord is an act or performance art, and not a real hip-hop crew? I’d like to think they’re all of the above, and that’s just fine with me.
Lessons learned from the Die Antwoord show:
Courtesy of Ninja, Yo-Landi, and DJ Hi-Tek
- When you want to talk about yo mama’s private parts Zef style (as we obviously all do) You say “ma se poes”
- If you want to be just a little more offensive you say: “Jou ma se poes in a fish paste jar” (your mother’s private parts in a fish paste jar)
- If you go to a Die Antwoord show and see Ninja and Yo-Landi in person, and realize they are actual human beings, you will feel normal in comparison, no matter how much of a sex-freak-weirdo you are.
more photos by KEVIN: