• Live Reviews

Le1f at The Empty Bottle on February 28, 2014

written by: on March 1, 2014

Three talented musicians, who knew their audience and music well, set The Empty Bottle on fire. DJs Nick Hook and Slava and rising star, Le1f blew the audiences’ mind with sophisticated heart-pumping dance/hip-hop tracks that lasted well into the night. It was probably one of their best shows and the sheer number of people dancing on the floor made this an unforgettable experience.

The night kicked off with DJ Nick Hook playing easy house music and familiar remixes of popular songs. People could not stop shaking to the beat. Hell, even one guy, who looked like Gimli from the Lord of the Rings, went to get water from a cooler while wiggling his hips. Hook’s music was addictive. He easily mixed up his playlist; spinning anything from slow, crunked-influenced hip hop shticks to colorful, dubstep that enthralled the crowd. Hook got everyone’s attention with his brand of music. 

But that was just the beginning. The next DJ, Slava, kicked it up a notch by unleashing a loop of beats that sounded like heavy nails hitting a hard surface, putting the audience in a trance, as the whole stage vibrated. Slava continued to play hard break beats for two minutes and then switched effortlessly to remixing popular hip-hop tunes. He was more innovative than Hook. After sedating the crowd with easy tunes, Slava, pumpec out from his drum machine: laser-like technoporn meshed with a loop of a lady singing. He let that tune rumble for another two minutes into peoples’ heads before he set off again, experimenting boldly with tracks by spinning heavy bass line rhythms that punctured a recurring ambient noise sloshing in the background. He ended on a high note, playing crunky hip-hop beats.

If DJs Nick Hook and Slava sent the crowd into a tizzy, then Le1f made them go wild. Khalif Diouf, a.k.a. Le1f, sauntered around the stage. His producer and collaborator Brandon Boom started off with a slow jam. All the tracks he played were electronic/dance infused rap tunes. At one point, the noise level from the audience increased, producing a maddening, ecstatic scream that overwhelmed Le1f’s live gig, rendering Le1f ‘s lyrics inaudible. Never mind the lyrics though, Le1f’s on-stage charisma and personality was vibrant and colorful. He gyrated in front of crowd; dancing, swirling, getting close to the audience, and even igniting them with “Y’all, still fucking with me?” One fan attempted to get on the stage reaching out his arms and bobbing his head energetically.

Le1f along with his producer played new songs like “Boom” from his soon to be released EP, Hey. Some of the songs were straight forward crunky melodies spiked with hazy, pop sounds. All of them were crowd-pleasing hip-hop ballads with heavy beats and catchy bass lines. At the end, Le1f’s on stage antics left a lasting impression on the audience. His charisma and vivacious energy was more impressive than his music. Nick Hook and Slava left the audience in a tizzy while Le1f’s performance definitely drove them into a frenzy.