Thundercat at Rickshaw Theatre

Thursday 23rd, February 2017 / 20:15
By Molly Randhawa

Thundercat at Rickshaw Theatre.
Photo: Galen Robinson-Exo

February 17, 2017

VANCOUVER — When I first heard that Thundercat was performing in Vancouver again, I wasn’t surprised that he was playing at the Rickshaw Theatre. The old Kung Fu theatre was strangely perfect for the eccentric bassist. With the show being sold out for weeks before, the dense crowds were expected. As I walked into the venue on Friday night, I was quickly greeted by an old friend who had informed me that he had taken too many mushrooms and was tripping out. This seemed to be the general consensus for most of the folks there. However, stoned or not, everyone there was clearly excited to see this dude deliver some soul shaking bass.

Wearing an all black fit, it looked like the murdered out Thundercat was really just there to slay us all. Performing alongside Justin Brown on the drums and Dennis Ham on the keys; the trio opened with “Tron Cat” off his 2013 LP “Apocalypse. In between songs, Thundercat exchanged some banter with the crowd, pointing out a Godzilla shirt he saw in the crowd. “That’s a really cool shirt man, that’s all I had to say,” he giggles as he starts playing the opening chords to “Lotus and the Jondy,” a tune also off “Apocalypse” dedicated to his friends Flying Lotus and Austin Peralta, who died in 2013 of viral pneumonia.

Thundercat performed an incredibly engaging show without the aid of visuals or other sensory stimulus except for lights and sound. There were a few minor hiccups with the microphone feedback at the venue, which didn’t seem to bother the bassist.

The rhythms that Thundercat delivers are completely in sync with the movements of his body. Extreme focus and his facial expressions while concentrating made him look like he was constipated, but it was charmingly reassuring for his fans to see that he was putting everything he had into his set. His drummer and keyboardist were also on the same wavelength, keeping up with the pace of the crowd and the vibe on stage without missing a beat.

This was Thundercat’s fourth sold out show in a row on his world tour to promote his upcoming album “Drunk”, which is set to be released Friday, February 24th. The album features talents such as Kamasi Washington, Kenny Loggins, Pharrell, Flying Lotus, and Kendrick Lamar.

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