Drake’s first “One Dance” performance

Drake Performes “One Dance” on SNL.

What Surprised Me:

The Box, the minimalist “Hotline-Bling-esque” box was surprising. Yeah, maybe it’s obvious and I should have seen it coming. Well, I didn’t. Also, I keep forgetting SNL has small stage(s), so it wasn’t going to be an elaborate set up to begin with.

I understand why Drake would and should bring the box back. If he uses it more than once (the more the better), then pop culture will slowly associate him with the box. Did he invent dancing inside of an LED lit box? No. But, that’s  pop culture for you—it doesn’t make sense and easily forgets its predecessors.

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It’s a funny gif^. I’m imagining seeing a guy (besides Drake) doing this at a club.

What I Didn’t Like:

I thought Drake was a little shy at some points. Drake you’re Drake. Don’t be shy. Even if you are, it’s part of your job as an entertainer to to give us the illusion of self-confidence.

Now, I might be overreacting about his shyness. Maybe he was trying to hit the verses just as softly as the track does.

The backup dancers outfits. Who was in charge of costuming? Please reconsider those outfits. At first I thought the two girls were awkward onstage, then I realized no there outfits are awkward.

What I Liked:

The corny dance moves. I mean we’ve all been agreeing for a while now that we find Drake’s corny dance moves sexy. If any other guy does them? Well, probably it’s gonna be a harder sell.

The backup dancers. Yes, I brought them back. Their outfits may have thrown me off, but their moves were on point. They added a breath of fresh air to “One Dance.”

The LED colors they used inside the box added nice ambience to the performance.

Review by: Gio Bradley.

Justin Timberlake’s first “Can’t Stop the Feeling!” performance

Justin Timberlake performs “Can’t Stop the Feeling!” at the “Eurovision Song Contest 2016” in Stockholm, Sweden.

What Surprised Me:

Ummm…

O.K., the live performance helped me like “Can’t Stop the Feeling!” a little more than before. I’m still not the biggest fan, but the performance improved my overall thoughts on the song.

I was not expecting the “Rock Your Body” intro. Now that’s song I will always dip to. It was a kute moment. I get it—the beginning song of his solo career and his latest song.

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What I Didn’t Like:

It lacked drive. It was kute, clean, nice, but I’m not going to remember it for long.

His dance breaks. Mr. Timberlake, you are famous for dancing it up onstage. Were you having an off week? Did you have no time to rehearse more choreography? Because his longest break was about 8 seconds.

What I Liked:

Overall, this performance brought to mind all of Justin Timberlake’s legacy. He’s been off the radar for about 2 years. By viewing this video, I had nostalgia for all of his other moments.

He had fun. Even if the performance was borderline basic, he had fun. And it was sweet watching him have a blast in front of the stadium crowd.

Review by: Gio Bradley.

 

Desiigner’s first “Panda” performance

Designer performs “Panda” on The Late Show with Stephen Colbert.

This was actually his first network television performance ever (again, he is a 19-year-old).

What Surprised Me:

The amount of energy he used to perform. I thought he would have been going for a ice cold, calculated demeanor.

Instead he was jumping around for almost the whole time. Desiigner had lots of arm movements, big facial expressions (some were really funny). That’s not at all what I expected.

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Which is a good thing! Nowadays it’s hard to be surprised by the actions of a song/music video and/or performance.

During his performance, Desiigner even rolled most of the “R”s himself.

What I Didn’t Like:

His voice did not match the playback. I realize that’s an obvious statement. Due to the energy he was using how could he have the serious yet detached vocals of the recorded version? I get it. At the same time, what if someone wanted to hear him rap live just the same way as he sounds on the track?

I probably don’t know enough about rapping, so the expectations might be different. However, if it’s a singer onstage, you hope they sound exactly as good as the recording, if not better.

What I liked:

Overall, even if he didn’t match the playback, I am happy I watched this performance. I would have never seen this hyper side of him if I didn’t press play. His live performance adds more to someone’s own mental image of Desiigner’s persona.

Now we know he sounds relatively calm on the track, but can get very active and physical onstage. I appreciate that he let himself go there. I’m sure beforehand his circle must have told him, or were thinking about the risk of him going “crazy” onstage and looking too weird.

It’s nice that Desiigner didn’t hold back.

Review by: Gio Bradley.