ODD FUTURE at OGDEN THEATRE | 10/9/11
Odd Future Wolf Gang Kill Them All does not give a fuck. Clearly. These cats are out to pillage, plunder and wreak mass hysteria and mayhem. Judging from the crowd's frenzied reaction at the Ogden last night, which included some kids flinging themselves from the balcony above to the pit below, OFWGKTA incited the masses with vigor and aplomb.
Syd the Kid, the crew's lady DJ, eased out onto the stage resembling an older and much more swagged-out Willow Smith and immediately went into a bass- banging Waka Flocka track that immediately got hands up and bodies flailing. She prepared the pit for the evening's craziness by passing out water and hyping the audience with ease. The dubstep-leaning set turned the Ogden into one thumping, pounding heartbeat, and then the lights went down.
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Domo Genesis emerged first, followed by Jasper, Mike G, Hodgy Beats and, finally, Tyler, the Creator. The audience went so damn crazy, it seemed to take the performers by surprise, with Tyler exclaiming, "This place is much bigger than I thought it would be!" The easiest way to describe what happened next is to imagine what would happen if you sprayed Mace on a rottweiler: As the OF gang went into "Swag Me Out," the crowd chanted "Wolf Gang!" along with the lyrics to the track with the ferocity of rabid dogs. That's when the first fans started launching themselves from the balcony, and Hodgy immediately went flying into the audience with the crowd surfing of a pro.
There was no rhyme or reason to the motley crew's set. Several times they huddled around the DJ booth for a last-minute decision on what song to play before queuing up cuts like "Orange Juice" (sans Earl, of course), "Sandwitches," "Bastard" and other tracks from Radical. At one point in the show, people began throwing random things onto the stage: T-shirts, hoodies, condoms, herb and student IDs. That last item prompted Tyler to encourage more IDs to float onto the stage. Before he got the words out of his mouth, the crew was attacked by a barrage of driver's licenses and various other forms of identification. One unlucky guy had his name and address called out with a nice threat of "Odd Future's gonna come to your house and fuck you up!" from Jasper.
Appropriate for the amount of ladies' undergarments tossed onto the stage, the portion of the show that was "for the bitches" began with blue lights and a sexy rendition of Mike G's "Everything That's Yours," a track rapped over Mos Def's "The Panties." A hilarious moment occurred when Jasper used a light saber to remove a red thong freshly thrown onto the monitors.
The energy in the room was palpable. For every enthusiastic leg-thrusting dance pumped out by Tyler and every scream of "Swag!" there were at least twenty people emulating the rappers' style and antics. Folks were all-around acting like maniacs, and OF loved it. The crazier it got, it seemed, the more hyped the outfit became. A female fan slid her phone onto the stage to Hodgy (who was under the weather and drinking what looked like hot tea), who then stomped on the device and poured his drink out on it, inciting screams of wonder from the lady fan and her girlfriends. Hodgy did what he could from a vocal perspective, with tracks from his collaboration as MellowHype, but honestly, he could have stood still with the microphone, and the crowd would have done the job for him.
"Turnt Down" turned the place upside down, and Hodgy almost got lost in the struggle for crowd-surfing domination, while Tyler completely smashed his performance of "Yonkers" under red lights and seated in a folding chair, before taking off his shirt and throwing himself around the stage as though possessed by a demon. The night ended with "Pigeons" and chants of "Kill people, burn shit, fuck school!" The band was incredibly reluctant to leave the stage and continued to yell and howl into the microphone well after the track was over. Reminiscent of Wu-Tang antics and with the following of Public Enemy, from the looks of this show at the Ogden, it appears as though rap's future will indeed be...Odd.
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Personal Bias: I think Odd Future are rowdy, rambunctious hooligans...and I love everything about them. Random Detail: Upon the crew proclaiming "I fucks with Denver," Left Brain donned a vintage Antonio McDyess jersey. In Boulder the night before, he wore an Avalanche jersey. By the way: Tyler, the Creator's voice live is absolutely incredible. He roars and grunts and howls with perfect depth and pitch. A vocal collaboration with Yonnas Abraham of The Pirate Signal would be more than appropriate. Tyler seemed to have more fun spinning his Michael Jackson-style dance moves and writhing around the stage like Prince than actually rapping.