More so than fellow French electronica acts Justice and Daft Punk, Yuksek seems more concerned with making the jump from DJ/producer to alternative dance-pop band front-man. One of the bigger dance drawcards at this year’s Splendour In The Grass, Yuksek has brought a live band (well, two other musicians) down-under to give us a taste of his adventurous dance-pop, and Sydney’s Oxford Art Factory received a surprisingly excellent performance as a result.
When you think of a Yuksek concert you would expect a night of warm-up DJ’s and a dance floor which is constantly alive with flailing limbs, but there was background music, one support band, more background music, and then Yuksek. This formula wasn’t a disappointment though because sole support act RuFus could not have been a better fit for the night – they played through their slot perfectly. Hits ‘We Left’ and the atmospheric ‘Paris Collides’ were undoubtedly the highlights, though their entire set was one highly enjoyable mesh of quality electronica and indie-pop greatness.
Yuksek and friends were quite late to the stage but as soon as the curtains parted we all knew why – the set up was overwhelming, the stage was absolutely packed with electronics and instruments, from synths to drums to guitars. With only two other musicians assisting Yuksek, the French maestro was eager to make up for lost time and got straight into it with a bongo-heavy introduction for ‘Always on the Run.’
The layering of each and every song was excellent, Yuksek obviously a perfectionist as him and his band included every one of the many instruments on stage at just the right time. A few sound issues didn’t slow down the set at all, going strength to strength and breathing new life into Yuksek’s dance-pop.
The final three songs hit the hardest, starting with the synth-heavy ‘On a Train,’ continuing with the energetic ‘Miracle’ and ending with the ever-popular ‘Tonight,’ the set-closing track causing mass hysteria venue-wide.
Yuksek’s new style and method of performing is well worth checking out, the way he and his band build each song is much different from just listening to his recordings. The Frenchman definitely knows how to get the crowd constantly moving and cheering as much as possible (assisted by his thick accent and humble interactions, which the crowd seemed to adore).