Music

Charli XCX Brings Special Guests and "Boys" to Brooklyn 'Pop 2' Party

Photos: Sachyn Mital

The second of two special shows for Pop 2 was held at Elsewhere in Brooklyn and saw Charli XCX provide a unique frame on pop.

After a star-studded Los Angeles show that included Tove Lo and Carly Rae Jepsen, Charli XCX brought her to Pop 2 mixtape/album party to New York, or more aptly the Elsewhere space in Bushwick, for an explosive night of music and guests.

As was the case in L.A., "the night featured such a diverse cast of women, queer performers and people of color" (BrooklynVegan) -- guests in NYC included Kim Petras, CupcakKe, Brooke Candy, Caroline Polachek (formerly of Chairlift), A.G. Cook, and Dorian Electra. The audience was just as diverse too and very positive -- several people introduced themselves to me before this show. That has ever happened in the past (usually the count is zero, to be honest).

Following an intro from A.G. Cook, Charli XCX finally took the stage after 9:30 and the audience went wild. Arms (many clutching phones) waved in the air as she and Kim Petras kicked off with "Unlock It". The live performance was as much a showcase for Pop 2 and Number 1 Angel (her previous mix) as it was for the special guests featured on each. Petras, straight from SXSW, rolled the energy into a performance of her own song, "I Don't Want It All". Later on, Caroline Polachek performed her song "Chandelier" after reprising her turn on "Tears".

The night's standout may have been the anthem "Boys", which featured sumptuous eyecandy on stage wearing pink tinged clothing some holding flowers. The coin-block sampling song was one of 2017's best pop songs and the celebrity-filled video received a lot of buzz. As the song ended, Charli leaned over to give one of the boys a kiss.

Charli noted that this was only the second occasion on which Brooke Candy and CupcakKe were performing her (the previous time was also in NYC) and the three looked thrilled to be sharing the stage. CupcakKe got a little naughty as she sang her songs "Duck Duck Goose" and "Deepthroat" (I'll let you guess what direction her antics took on that one) and the crowd gobbled it up. The finale was a one-two of "Lipgloss" and "Girls Night Out" which saw almost everyone return to the stage and a bunch of fans take the initiative to get on up there themselves (before they were quickly escorted off).

Pop 2 and Charli's previous mixtape Number 1 Angel sound like little anything else Charli has done before. It will be interesting to hear how Taylor Swift's audience reacts to Charli when she opens shows for the former's upcoming summer tour. Would Charli dare bring her squad out with her on the tour as Swift had in the past? Charli draws a diverse audience out to hear audacious sonics and infectious lyrics as the Pop 2 parties can attest.




3/18/2018 Elsewhere Setlist:
Intro (A.G. Cook)
Unlock It
I Don't Want It All (Kim Petras)
Lucky
Femmebot
3AM (Pull Up)
Roll With Me
Backseat
Tears
Chandelier (Caroline Polachek)
Out of My Head
Boys
Track 10
Don't Touch My Hair Hoe (Brooke Candy)
I Got It
Duck Duck Goose (CupcakKe)
Deepthroat (CupcakKe)
Lipgloss
Girls Night Out

Music


Books


Film


Recent
Music

Run the Jewels - "Ooh LA LA" (Singles Going Steady)

Run the Jewels' "Ooh LA LA" may hit with old-school hip-hop swagger, but it also frustratingly affirms misogynistic bro-culture.

Books

New Translation of Balzac's 'Lost Illusions' Captivates

More than just a tale of one man's fall, Balzac's Lost Illusions charts how literature becomes another commodity in a system that demands backroom deals, moral compromise, and connections.

Music

Protomartyr - "Processed by the Boys" (Singles Going Steady)

Protomartyr's "Processed By the Boys" is a gripping spin on reality as we know it, and here, the revolution is being televised.

Music

Go-Go's Bassist Kathy Valentine Is on the "Write" Track After a Rock-Hard Life

The '80s were a wild and crazy time also filled with troubles, heartbreak and disappointment for Go-Go's bass player-guitarist Kathy Valentine, who covers many of those moments in her intriguing dual project that she discusses in this freewheeling interview.

Music

New Brain Trajectory: An Interview With Lee Ranaldo and Raül Refree

Two guitarists, Lee Ranaldo and Raül Refree make an album largely absent of guitar playing and enter into a bold new phase of their careers. "We want to take this wherever we can and be free of genre restraints," says Lee Ranaldo.

Books

'Trans Power' Is a Celebration of Radical Power and Beauty

Juno Roche's Trans Power discusses trans identity not as a passageway between one of two linear destinations, but as a destination of its own.

Music

Yves Tumor Soars With 'Heaven to a Tortured Mind'

On Heaven to a Tortured Mind, Yves Tumor relishes his shift to microphone caressing rock star. Here he steps out of his sonic chrysalis, dons some shiny black wings and soars.

Music

Mike Patton and Anthony Pateras' tētēma Don't Hit the Mark on 'Necroscape'

tētēma's Necroscape has some highlights and some interesting ambiance, but ultimately it's a catalog of misses for Mike Patton and Anthony Pateras.

Music

M. Ward Offers Comforting Escapism on 'Migration Stories'

Although M. Ward didn't plan the songs on Migration Stories for this pandemic, they're still capable of acting as a balm in these dark hours.

Music

Parsonsfield Add Indie Pop to Their Folk on 'Happy Hour on the Floor'

Happy Hour on the Floor is a considerable departure from Parsonsfield's acclaimed rustic folk sound signaling their indie-pop orientation. Parsonsfield remind their audience to bestow gratitude and practice happiness: a truly welcomed exaltation.

Music

JARV IS... - "House Music All Night Long" (Singles Going Steady)

"House Music All Night Long" is a song our inner, self-isolated freaks can jive to. JARV IS... cleverly captures how dazed and confused some of us may feel over the current pandemic, trapped in our homes.

Music

All Kinds of Time: Adam Schlesinger's Pursuit of Pure, Peerless Pop

Adam Schlesinger was a poet laureate of pure pop music. There was never a melody too bright, a lyrical conceit too playfully dumb, or a vibe full of radiation that he would shy away from. His sudden passing from COVID-19 means one of the brightest stars in the power-pop universe has suddenly dimmed.

Music

Folkie Eliza Gilkyson Turns Up the Heat on '2020'

Eliza Gilkyson aims to inspire the troops of resistance on her superb new album, 2020. The ten songs serve as a rallying cry for the long haul.

Music

Human Impact Hit Home with a Seismic First Album From a Veteran Lineup

On their self-titled debut, Human Impact provide a soundtrack for this dislocated moment where both humanity and nature are crying out for relief.

Music

Monophonics Are an Ardent Blast of True Rock 'n' Soul on 'It's Only Us'

The third time's the charm as Bay Area soul sextet Monophonics release their shiniest record yet in It's Only Us.

Film

'Slay the Dragon' Is a Road Map of the GOP's Methods for Dividing and Conquering American Democracy

If a time traveler from the past wanted to learn how to subvert democracy for a few million bucks, gerrymandering documentary Slay the Dragon would be a superb guide.

Music

Bobby Previte / Jamie Saft / Nels Cline: Music from the Early 21st Century

A power-trio of electric guitar, keyboards, and drums takes on the challenge of free improvisation—but using primarily elements of rock and electronica as strongly as the usual creative music or jazz. The result is focused.

Books

Does Inclusivity Mean That Everyone Does the Same Thing?

What is the meaning of diversity in today's world? Russell Jacoby raises and addresses some pertinent questions in his latest work, On Diversity.

Reviews
Collapse Expand Reviews
Features
Collapse Expand Features
PM Picks
Collapse Expand Pm Picks

© 1999-2020 PopMatters.com. All rights reserved.
PopMatters is wholly independent, women-owned and operated.