Pyrotechnics? Check. Confetti storms? Check. Smoke effects? Check.
A’ight, The Chainsmokers’ set is ready to roll.
The Chainsmokers, consisting of Alex Pall and Andrew Taggart, were responsible for chart-topping pop hits such as Closer, Don’t Let Me Down, and Paris. But how would it feel like to be at the moshpit and watch them perform live? I was not expecting my night to turn out… something just like this.
The duo played a private event at the Marina Bay Sands Expo and Convention Centre on March 28th, and boy, were their audience in for a visual treat. Mastercards Singapore did an amazing job organising and designing the show: the venue’s setup is literally an indoor carnival, with a makeshift slide right smack in the middle of the hall, and even food and beverage vendors with various roundtables (including a gourmet food truck!) at the back of the venue! Let’s not forget the vibrant lyrical signages that decorated the venue too, turning each corner of the concert hall to be a potential photo opportunity.
The night commenced swiftly when Jasmine Sokko graced the stage a little over 7:30pm. Decked in her iconic visor and a lanky black dress, we cannot keep our eyes off the stage as the electronic pop artist delivered a stellar performance, including hits such as H2O, #0000FF, 600D and even her latest single, F5. If anyone from the audience has never heard of Jasmine Sokko, they would have easily been a convert after her 45-minute set was over.
Right after, a local DJ duo took over for a little more than an hour straight, spinning popular electronic and house mixes in hopes of hyping the crowd up. At this point, I had wished someone would have told me that I would be on my feet for more than two hours for the act that we came for. When it was time for The Chainsmokers to come on stage, I was feeling a bit restless – and I could tell that I was not the only one.
Finally, the American DJ duo made a grand entrance and exploded on stage with a fiery remix of Sick Boy. Early set-offerings such as Everybody Hates Me and Inside Out, were quintessentially electronic pop, which saw Pall working hard on the DJ console most of the time and Taggart providing lead vocals and engaging the crowd.
After 30 minutes in, it was plain to see that The Chainsmokers’ set offered nothing refreshing, as Taggart returned to Pall at the DJ console to churn out remixes after remixes. There were a few inventive rhythms, such as injecting rock icons Papa Roach’s Last Resort with their remix of Don’t Let Me Down. To keep things exciting, pyrotechnics and smoke effects were utilised approximately once every 10 minutes, or perhaps at any given time when the audience seemed to be snoozing.
Things looked up when Taggart, the one among the duo with Bieber-esque good looks (in case you are wondering), decided that it would be a great idea to jump down from the 4-metres high stage just to “get closer to us to know that it is real”. Firstly, that was pretty dramatic. Secondly, what took you so long?!
Singing Closer word-for-word with the crowd was one of the few intimate moments Taggart shared with us. With some attempts made to excite the crowd further, the organisers released balloons when Break Up Every Night came on. At this point, the rapt teenage audience seemed to be more keen in sharing these moments on Instagram than to respond at any of Taggart’s animated dance moves – at one point, he even did that stiff-armed dance. I guess that’s the price to pay when your music appeals to an audience that exhibits herd behaviours.
The most impressive part of the whole show would have been the production quality: the concert was evidently well-planned with its strategic lighting placements and stage visuals that made the entire concert very visually appealing. This definitely sets a Chainsmoker concert apart from any other generic EDM concerts.
If I’m being honest, The Chainsmokers seemed to be paying homage to their past, as it felt more like a DJ set than a pop concert; anyone who had been expecting the latter would be sorely disappointed.
After the concert has ended, it seemed that some of the balloons had found their way out of the concert hall. I witnessed a fellow concert-goer chasing these balloons savagely and popping them out with her feet – noticing this, I can’t help feeling a sense of unity.
Photos by Arthur Keng and Brandon Neo of the DANAMIC Team.