This past weekend in Dallas, Texas, Hallyu Entertainment brought back its highly popular “Kpop All Night,” with a VIP guest lineup to envy. Working in conjunction with Ticketgate’s (Music Gate US) Hi-Life Tour and nightclub SISU Uptown, many fans were privy to an intimate show with Hi-Lite Records artists Paloalto, Okasian, G2,and DJ Djanga. For a fairly reasonable ticket price, fans gained entrance to the club where the music was banging and the bartenders were Soju slanging. Clubbies were dressed to impress and there was definitely lots of eye candy to satisfy any sweet tooth. The vibe at SISU was resort style, complete with the aesthetically beautiful pool placed smack dab in the middle of the club. It was hypnotic.
At around Midnight, DJ Janga got the show started and to a roar of cheers, G2 took the stage first. He got the crowd hyped and many patrons, drinks and all, jumped in unison with him and his killer flows. Next up? Okasian. He wowed the crowd with his signature rapping style apparent by the sea of head bobbing in the crowd and walked around hi-fiving fans who were close to the stage. Last up, but definitely not least, Paloalto took the stage and the crowd went crazy. His laid back style and smooth lyrics added to the Hip Hop vibe that was felt by all. Each performed classic hits and if that wasn’t the icing on the cake, towards the end of the show all three artists came out and performed crowd favorites such as Shikgoo, Turtle Ship, and IT G MA. In three words, IT WAS LIT!
As the night came to a close, lucky VIP fans were able to meet and take a picture with the the artists, as well as leave with a signed poster of the event. Simply put, it was a great time had by all. Hopefully this won’t be the last time they come to Texas.
This concert felt like it marked the turning point for London as a Korean Hip Hop host City. Fresh from the Hi-lite gig in late 2015 and with Rock Bottom peeking over the horizon, it seems that ‘The Big Smoke’ has made made a name for itself as a worthwhile destination for Korea’s rapping elite. There is a fair argument to say(don’t tell Keith) that Dok2 is the most prominent Korean rap artist globally ,regularly collaborating iconic producers such as DJ Mustard and the like. The excitement for the Illionaire Euro run was tangible. With London , Paris Berlin & Madrid all on the hitlist before casually sauntering over to SXSW in Austin Texas the event felt like an early the leg of an Unofficial Illionaire (minus Beenzino) World Tour across.
The crowd, an interesting mix of Korean Diaspora , Kpop gyal overspill and East (London) Cool Kids hugged the walls the Laundry in hot anticipation of the headliner.The standout support act was Darq E Freaker , offering the crowd a balanced mix of energetic and dreamesque production to gear them for the main event. My personal Stand out track was don’t Freak out.
But the big surge of energy was saved for Dok2 himself alighting the stage. When the Seoul native dipped on to the stage with his sidekick donning a hat bearing the the cities name , the crowd roared to welcome the champion. After briefly welcoming the audience with a few brief words , he began making his way through his extensive back catalogue. The party launched into full effect however when he drew for a trademark hit enticing the crowd to scream “Two Chains & a M**** ******* rollie back at the stage whilst the Illionaire founder brandished jewelry.
As is now becoming a bit of a custom for London KHH gigs security were forced to intervene a record breaking 3 times!!! Similarly to the Hi-lite gig the audience showed their appreciation by getting fully gassed and bouncing each other around to the rapid high hat soundtrack to the point of risking injury to more delicate fans somewhere among the throng. Though for the most part this was good natured it did cause interruptions to the set much to the frustration of many in attendance and at one point required Dok2 to side with security and appeal to the crowd to move back.
The approximately 40 minutes set was bought to a close by The Quiett and Dok2 returning to the stage to repeated calls of ‘Oncore’ to offer one more recital of YGGR to the appease the crowd before offering photos. The notoriously T-total and private Dok2 charmed London audiences with the ease. Although i have been among the number who have criticised Dok2 for mimicking American rap too closely(along with Cheetah) ,i conceed that his performances are never lacking. There is something about the way which he calmly delivers navigating the stage with a steady pace and occasionally grinning to bare his grills that just draws you in. It’s the precision among the mayhem that makes him an interesting artist. The following day the duo were announced as SMTM5 judges giving I-fans the opportunity to get there weekly Illionaire fix for a fortnight or two. This certainly felt a great moment in his career to see Dok2 and an even better time to be in the Euro KHH Squad.