beabadoobee with special guests Christian Leave and BLACKSTARKIDS Shine Up Detroit’s Majestic Theatre (SHOW REVIEW/PHOTOS)

BLACKSTARKIDS Get the Party Started

Early in the show on December 8th at Detroit’s Majestic Theatre, BLACKSTARKIDS’ singer Ty admitted he hadn’t gotten a good night’s sleep: “I’m literally dying up here, but it’s worth it for you guys.” The crowd was more than eager to bring their energy to the opening set. The group’s genre-bending styles — evoking everything from the anthemic calls-and-responses of the Beastie Boys to the group dynamics of Odd Future, all set to some sturdy, rock instrumentation — got the crowd jumping. Singer Gabe got the audience waving their hands back and forth to the jubilant closer, “Time Flies When You’re Having Fun.” 

Christian Leave Unleash Torrent of Riffs

Christian Leave took the stage next, emerging on stage to a little audio pre-roll of The Simpsons’ theme song. As the jingle wrapped up, the band unleashed a barrage of ripping riffs. The band’s loose energy shined throughout, especially between lead singer Christian Ackridge and guitarist Henri Cash. The coda of “Bedache” brought a satisfying tempo change, as the jangly riffs sped up. Closer “Beside You” started slowly, but if you thought Christian Leave would go quietly into the night, you were wrong. The back half of the track gave way to a huge breakdown, with crunchy guitar riffs layering over the dramatic crash of cymbals. 

beabadoobee’s Opening Combo

Finally, beabadoobee took the stage. The band seized the crowd’s attention from the start, opening the set with the killer one-two punch of “Sun More Often” and “Care.” The latter track’s punchy guitar riff was a shot of adrenaline, fueling an early singalong in the audience. 

Mastering the Tempo Shift

Some of the most satisfying tracks of the set (“Sorry,” “Yoshimi, Forest, Magdalene” and “Charlie Brown”) walked the tightrope between hushed vocals and the grungiest riffs. beabadoobee’s gentle croon shined over the minimal intro of “Sorry,” before giving way to a crushing guitar riff that evoked the best of Nirvana. “Yoshimi, Forest, Magdalene” cascaded into a frantic breakdown led by a pounding drumbeat. And the singer’s voice roared to life with the emphatic repetition of the anthemic “throw it away” line in “Charlie Brown.” 

The Closers

After some loud cheers for an encore and one more song, beabadoobee returned to the stage solo. Equipped only with an acoustic guitar, the singer meandered through the beautiful jam “Coffee,” leading a hushed singalong among the rapt audience. After, the full band returned, hyping up the crowd for closer “Cologne.” Midway through, guitarist Jacob Bugden unleashed a screaming guitar solo, as the crowd jumped along once more.  

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