Dev >> When I found out Dev would be playing at the Troubadour in West Hollywood, I can’t help but say I got a bit nostalgic.
For one, ‘Like a G6’ was my jam back in 2010. Going to Vegas? Like a G6. Going to the club? Like a G6. Going to work? Like a G6. You know it was your jam too. The infamous line belonged to the one and only Dev on the Far East Movement’s well-known single with The Cataracs. Didn’t realize it was her? Neither did I until recently, and ‘if you don’t know, now you know’ as Biggie would say.
Second, when I first moved to LA Dev was all over the radio, in every club, and blasting in every convertible stuck in the free parking lot otherwise known as the 405. Moving to LA was a dream for me, so like muscle memory her songs will always bring me back to those happy times.
You can say I had moderately high expectations going to her show. Not because I anticipated a wild performance with lots of dancing and maybe a guest performer, but because I was ready to go back to that happy place that fades away after some years in LA.
Was I disappointed? Maybe a little.
Dev’s opening band, Five Knives, rocked the house. Or should I say, ‘Rocktronica’d the house, which is the term I’m coining for their brand of music that blends alternative/punk rock with electronica beats. They had high energy, never stopped smiling and truly seemed to be enjoying themselves despite the limited Cinco de Mayo crowd on a Tuesday night.
‘I know what them boys want/They just wanna taste my sugar!’ screamed the lead singer as she danced across the stage. The drummer pounded away while the keyboardists/guitarists rocked out with each other during some face-offs. In typical LA fashion, the crowd couldn't be pumped up physically but the expressions on their faces suggested otherwise.
I’m going to keep Five Knives on my short list of bands to watch. Once they drop their full album [only an EP for now] you will be hearing about them. With the EDM and electro-pop movement dominating the scene right now, I don’t see why ‘Rocktronica’ can’t be the next wave to unfold. You heard it here first: Rocktronica is coming.
After a short break, Dev came on the stage wearing what I can only describe as a neon version of the jacket worn by The Man in the Yellow Hat character à la Curious George with booty shorts instead of pants. Unlike her album cover with long black hair, Dev had a bleached blonde pixie cut that framed her features though hid her Hispanic heritage [which she reminded us when she spoke of Cinco de Mayo problems].
She dropped some Indie beats, some old and new tracks, and of course ‘Like a G6’ and ‘Dancing in the Dark’. She was on point sing-talking her way through each song, though I guess I was disappointed that she left the chorus to the pre-recorded version via the DJ instead of belting them out herself. It seemed like she only sang about 30 seconds at a time between chorus and beat, so I don’t feel like I really got to hear her sing the way I wanted her to. This was further added by the fact that the show lasted a mere 40 minutes before she finished and joined the crowd for a drink at the bar.
Needless to say, I was left wanting more. I was happy with the sound and her enthusiasm, but overall it was lackluster and needed more energy. I got the impression that she loves to perform but didn’t really want to be there last night, which I’m sure was in part to the smaller crowd and the holiday. I hate that I was disappointed, because I had high hopes. I had a good time in general—just wish there was more of it.