The unlikely tour partners The Funk Hunters and jackLNDN descended on Minneapolis’ 7th Street Entry for an intimate and enthusiastic (especially for a Wednesday night) show this past week, and it was just the influx of love and dancing that I needed.
Looking around throughout the show, it was obvious that the feeling was very much mutual. I’m unfamiliar with the Funk Hunters’ following, so I can’t say whether any of them knew jackLNDN’s music before he took the stage. Given the entirely vacant dance floor at the beginning of his set, I’d suspect not.
“Hi, my name is Jack and I’m from London.” Jack introduced himself briefly before diving into his first song.
Somehow, almost three years had passed since I last saw jackLNDN perform live, during his unofficial takeover of Electric Forest 2015. I think he played something like seven sets over the course of the festival, and that was before they split into two weekends. He was everywhere and he was fantastic. As soon as he started, it was as if he picked up right where he’d dropped off, but after a couple songs I realized that wasn’t the case. He’d improved, and significantly.
Slowly but surely, the crowd filled the sunken dance floor, which is spooned by an elevated area on three sides. At first, they milled, but soon they began bopping from foot to foot, no doubt led by Jack’s fancy footwork on stage.
In his previous sets, Jack leaned a little more heavily on other people’s material (although I may remember that because the most stand-out performance was at a silent disco), but on this go round, it was all Jack, all the time. Which is a good thing, particularly on the songs where he provided the vocals.
By the end of what felt like a very short set, the dance floor had filled up with a particularly jubilant crowd, and after thanking us and the Funk Hunters profusely, Jack ended just as he’d started, “My name is Jack and I’m from London.”
After a brief changeover, the Funk Hunters took the stage to the absolute delight of the crowd. As I stated above, I didn’t know a lot about them going into the show. I’d sampled a bunch of their music, but I hadn’t looked for more information, so when there was a single Funk Hunter onstage taking care of the music, I was a little confused. Maybe Funk Hunter #2 was sick? Nope, turns out he controls the visual elements of the live performance. Funky indeed.
Their recorded music did not do them justice. If you would have told me that their performance would have scratched an old school Pretty Lights itch that I didn’t realize I had, I would have bought tickets the second they went on sale. But I didn’t know it until I was there, and I was incredibly happy that I was.
Judging by the people around me, which included a guy who, if I had to guess, was possibly tracing Link’s route through The Legend of Zelda on his palm, everybody else was pleased with the sounds as well. Most everybody else was “regular” dancing, though.
If you’re on the list of cities that these two have yet to hit, I’d highly recommend getting your ass to the show. If not, there will be more shows in the future, including a Funk Hunters appearance at Electric Forest 2019. Can’t wait!
I work, live and play in Minneapolis.
I try to tell the story of the people that create music and experiences through pictures as well as through words.