Live Review: The Internet Brings (More) Soul To Harlem

Live Reviews

It was a half an hour past The Internet’s 7:30 pm showtime start on a Monday night (June 29), but no one in the intimate audience seemed to care as they swigged down Corona beers and red wine. Hell, they had waited nearly two years for new music so an extra thirty minutes wasn’t going to hurt. The dimly lit studio/ bar/ casual cafe, Madiba Harlem, was illuminated by the DJ-ing sister duo, Angel + Dren’s make-shift set up as they spinned music selection just as varied as the crowd. Alternating from ratchet club bangers like Too $hort’s “Blow The Whistle” to classic slow jams like Foxy Brown’s “Get Me Home” held the concert-goers attention.

At the stroke of 8:07 pm, the room grew darker and a roar of the applause welcomed the group’s producer, Matt Martians, followed by Jameel Bruner (keys), Patrick Paige (bass), Chris Smith (drums), Steve Lacy (guitar), and finally front gal, Syd tha Kyd. For their very first live performance of Ego Death didn’t disappoint. With no sense of nervousness in the air, just the will power to stake a powerful claim as taste makers in nu-wave R&B, they kicked off the show with the Janelle Monáe-assisted, “Gabby.”

SEE ALSO: Stream The Internet’s ‘Ego Death’ Album

Every single soul was moved by the vibes they were supplying. Standing still at one of The Internet’s live shows is d**n near impossible. With Paige’s bass guitar, a chime of Smith’s drums, a crescendo from Bruner’s swift key work mixed with Syd’s pure vocals and you’ll have no other option than to boogie down to their jam session.

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Cool and confident, Syd (also sipping on a cold Corona) & Co. progressed through the album one track at a time. It didn’t matter that the album had just came out that same day. By the time they got to the third song in the set, Martians jokingly yelled out, “We’re trying to be emotional. Cut the lights.” The lights dimmed just as they performed a touching performance of “Penthouse Clouds.” “That song was originally dedicated to Mike Brown, but now I can dedicate it to so many nig**s,” Syd said. “It’s hard times out there y’all. Be safe.” A silence grew over the crowd and she hung her head down, pleading, “Forreal, I shouldn’t even have to write a song like that.”

SEE ALSO: Groove Theory: The Internet Is R&B’s New Remedy

The band quickly picked up the pace after sliding into their single, “Special Affair” just before treating fans to an impromptu performance of Feel Good’s “Dontcha” and Purple Naked Ladies’ bonus track, “Live It Up.” The night was a success amidst a few quirks in the sound system as it took nearly two takes to perform the last song of the night, “Get Away.” The group members made funny faces at the few casualties but played it cool, keeping the groove going. Across the board, their first live performance of Ego Death was well worth the wait as the The Internet’s energy flowed through the room, making for a d**n good time.

Catch The Internet at Brooklyn’s Baby’s All Right today (June 30) and at Central Park’s SummerStage alongside Basement Jaxx on Wedensday (July 1).

Photo Credit: Madiba Harlem