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Baauer @ Union Transfer with DAYO and Tunji Ige.

March 31, 2016
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Text by Christopher Donahue. Images by Teresa McCullough.

After a heavy pause from DJ-hosted performers, Union Transfer opened its doors last week for Philadelphia native/trap superstar Baauer and his “First Foot Tour.”

The Philly-flavored show, which welcomed hipsters, ravers and an all-ages crowd, started off the night with local DJ DAYO. DAYO is known for the fusion of Nu-Disco, Hip-Hop and some pop favorites. Vanessa Carlton’s “1,000 miles ” was a notable WTF moment that brought pure nostalgia to fans as they slowed down from electronic beats and sang along to classics.

Most electronic fans will tell you that all genres of music are welcomed and appreciated in a scene that represents peace, love, unity and respect. These elements bring together a unique crowd like no other, and with this amalgam came an easy transition into Tunji Ige, a 20-year old West Chester University student who caught the attention of electronic crunk musician ILoveMakonnen. The “Dark Liquor” and “On My Grind” lyricist hyped up the crowd with some beloved hip-hop beats, and then followed into his own tracks from the 2014 mixtape “The Love Project.” The North Philadelphian artist proved that he could be the next best thing in progressive rap (catch him at the JUMP-curated Red Bull Sound Select show at Underground Arts on 4/21 with Moosh & Twist).

At 10:15, Mr. “One Touch” himself took to the stage to live up to the name he’s made for himself in the world of electronic dance music. With his long-awaited debut album Aa (4 years in the making), Harry “Baauer” Rodrigues made sure to do some serious switch hitting on decks. Dropping trap essentials like Flume’s remix of “Hyper Paradise” by Hermitude and Flosstradamus’ “Rollup,” to bass-filled remixes of Rihanna and Missy Elliot, Baauer made sure everyone was getting a rightful taste of what he is known for- a little bit of everything.

As soon as GTA’s “Booty Bounce” was dropped, the crowd was going hard in full force. The crowd moved infectiously to the snare-heavy track “GoGo!” the lead single off Aa that had every raver’s hands in the air. The crowd got rowdier and sweatier as RL Grime & What So Not’s anthem “Tell Me” (Baauer edit) pulsated throughout the room. Any trap music enthusiast will tell you “the harder the better,” as made evident by the mosh pit that nearly scuffed every 18 year olds new Vans.

This show didn’t have the glitzy LED backdrops or pyrotechnics of today’s mainstream dance music shows. It provided us with a producer, his tools and a strobe light. This made the whole experience feel more underground. Think back to the days when Baauer dubbed himself Captain Harry and spun at the Medusa Lounge in Rittenhouse. Nothing has changed except his stage name – that’s for damn sure. Baauer’s energy, spark and love for music is like no other, and he certainly shows it on stage as he parties with his fans. He continues to remind us why he is a festival staple and fan favorite.

Note: “Harlem Shake” was dropped two times…and we were shaking

One Comment
  1. March 31, 2016 10:47 pm

    I’ll be at Union Transfer tomorrow night, 4/1, for Wolf Alice!

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