Live Review: Drapht, The Funkoars, K21

18 August 2015 | 10:16 am | James Dawes

"Drapht's beats aren't constricted by genre or era."

More Drapht More Drapht
It was only a week prior to the first show on the
Dancin' John Doe
tour that the Perth MC Drapht launched the video for his catchy new single of the same name. Fast forward to his last show on the tour, at The Gov. Three songs in and he's rocking the single, conducting the crowd as they sing along. Cast your eyes around the sold-out venue. The diverse age demographic of fans are united, carefree, chanting the hook and filling the space with movement and energy. It's a hit. Drapht continues to connect with his fans through the spirit of living your life true to your heart.

Ticket holders began to roll in at 8pm with casual social chatter filling the room as K21 took the stage, followed by The Funkoars, who hyped the crowd for the headline act.  

"Turn it up sound man, turn it up!" The sound system was pushed to its limits as the subs vibrated your soul. The energy of the crowd erupted as Drapht leapt on stage, layering his vocals over the beat of Sound Man, taken from 2008 album Brothers Grimm, after he worked us into a frenzy of anticipation through several instrumental bars. Joined by his DJ, live drummer and accompanying rapper, his set displayed an array of hits from previous albums and new material from his upcoming fifth record, which is due for release soon. One new track had a note-bending Jimi Hendrix feel; Drapht's beats aren't constricted by genre or era. His drummer added complexity to the overall sound, providing fills and turning hip hop into a musical delight.

Don't miss a beat with our FREE daily newsletter

The set strung together a chain of surprises, sampling other artists — including fellow Australian producer Flume — and reminiscing through classic '90s hip hop sounds. His limits are infinite. For those who haven't yet delved into Drapht, his iconic hit Jimmy Recard was followed by a theatrical funeral service that led to its sister-song RIP JR. The atmosphere peaked after Drapht left the stage following Rapunzel. The buzzing rumble saw Drapht and The Funkoars return for an encore, continuing the party for one more. 

The Gov gave the evening a local gig ambience, what with having the support acts floating around in the crowd. Lights and visuals, which could have potentially heightened the stage aesthetic, were somewhat lacking, yet Drapht's strong stage presence outshone whatever technical failings might have been evident.

Drapht had a greater appreciation of dynamics and a sense of variation within his show that lifted his status over K21 and The Funkoars, who tended to have the same themes and style throughout their sets. Drapht fuses wit and raw punchlines with melodic hooks and varied rhythmic flow to produce the perfect harmony between party anthems and eerie grooves.