Approaching the KCPL Live Plaza this Sunday, September 4 2016, for the Mad Decent Block Party, the line to get in spanned to easily 200 people. The streets were shut down, the speakers blaring, and ravers flooding the venue ready to rage into Labor Day.
Emerging hip-hop act D.R.A.M. was limited to only a 20 minute performance, despite the fact that he has been worked with some of the biggest names in rap today, Chance the Rapper and Lil Yachty included. His hit song “Broccoli” which is currently clocking in at over 92,500,000 Spotify spins, he did not even perform the song during his own set. During Diplo’s closing set, the DJ thankfully spun the instrumental of the colossal hit and D.R.A.M. came to the stage again to deliver his latest banger.
Rising Chicago duo Louis the Child proved why they’re one of the biggest names in the business. They were entirely reckless with their song selection, throwing caution to the wind and playing back to back Nirvana tracks. Their style of DJing was interesting, they played a good mixture of trap-infused EDM and almost Skrillex-style dubstep, yet they never missed a beat. Seamlessly creative and hungry to move the crowd, Louis the Child laid down one of the night’s heaviest acts.
It wasn’t until Diplo, the founder and chairman of the record label, Mad Decent, and organizer of the nation-wide block party series, started spinning that the event truly became a party. Diplo has been doing his thing around the world for almost two decades, and that is evidently clear during his set. He is the truest pro in the game, by a thousand miles. There is no crowd-pandering, there are surprises and fun tricks up his sleeve, and he genuinely creates fun with his inventive remixes of songs everybody knows and loves. For example, a surprisingly cool remix of Weezer’s “Say it Ain’t So” was a crowd favorite, and he didn’t even need a build up or a drop for it. There was power in the music alone, not the effects he added.