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Tinashe, Mac DeMarco highlights of Spring Weekend

Saturday lineup wows crowds, Fetty Wap’s lip-synced Friday performance underwhelming

Spring Weekend kicked off Friday evening with clear skies, minimal wind and Funkinevil DJ-ing as students in the line stretching down George Street slowly inched their way onto the Main Green.

Funkinevil’s set did not seem to do much for the crowd, but their graphics featured cascading dollar bills and bouncing beach balls. Money and warmth: What more could a college student want?

Tink took the stage around 8:10 p.m. with a pair of pump-up dancers to pick up the energy and kicked off her set with “L.E.A.S.H.” Her performance’s central messages included female empowerment and bemoaning the difficulty of finding a “good man” at 21 years of age.

The rapper slowed things down with her third song, “Million,” which showcased cooler R&B vocals. But she kept things lively the rest of the evening with songs like “H2O” and “Ratchet Commandments,” leaving the crowd in good spirits for Fetty Wap.

Fetty featured two opening acts of his own prior to stepping on stage: Liam Lis, a Justin-Bieber-circa-2008-esque singer, and another rapper, both of whom tried to keep the crowd engaged for the half hour between Tink’s departure and Fetty’s entrance.

Amid chants of, “When I say 17, you say 38,” one of the hype men said, “I bet no other (expletive) Ivy League looks like this,” stroking all of Brown’s egos.

Fetty finally took the stage with “679,” cutting the music sporadically to hear the crowd sing along.

Cheers ricocheted throughout the green when the intros to “My Way” and “Trap Queen” started up.

To much chagrin, Fetty’s lip-syncing was a little too obvious, and his double renditions of several hits seemed a little compensatory.

“I really like this song, so I’m going to play it again,” he said of “679,” with the crowd singing along.

Saturday afternoon, What Cheer? Brigade returned for a fifth year at Spring Weekend, drawing the crowd away from the main stage and playing its set from the steps of Sayles Hall. The 19-piece brass band garnered the strongest cheers of the weekend up until that point, closing out a group of funky retro jams with “Malaguena,” a vamping piece reminiscent of mariachi music.

Thundercat promptly took the stage around 4:15, enlivening the crowd with finger-fracturing solos on his bass guitar featured in almost every song.

Following “Tron Song” and an instrumental rendition of Kendrick Lamar’s “Complexion,” which he produced, the artist finished with, “Open Your Eyes,” an electronica-blues song that got the crowd on its feet. While Thundercat’s vocals were impressive, the strongest part of the performance was the instrumentals, which nicely complemented the laid-back vibes on the green as most students lazed around on blankets, soaking up the day’s last moments of sun.

Students in the snaking lines for food abandoned their hunger and rushed the stage when Tinashe entered just before six o’clock. Arguably the best entertainer of the weekend, Tinashe took the stage with four talented dancers and her own smooth moves.

Tinashe addressed the crowd with ease, transitioning between pieces with no hiccups and treating the crowd to songs from both her debut album “Aquarius” and her upcoming album “Joyride.”

“Dreams Are Real,” from “Joyride,” displayed the singer’s vocal range; she mixed R&B vibes with an easy falsetto and low rumble.

The singer took a break halfway through her set, affording her dancers the time for a short dance-off that drew massive cheers from the crowd. Tinashe herself balanced singing and dancing impressively well, jumping, twisting and turning around the stage without missing a beat.

The back-end of the set was loaded with fan favorites: The team fired off “All Hands On Deck,” “Player” and “All My Friends” in quick succession. Tinashe concluded with an encore of “2 On,” screaming at the top of her lungs to encourage the crowd to sing along.

Mac DeMarco cooled the energy of the dispersed crowd with his jangle-pop sound, inviting remaining audience members to chill with him after the concert. He cracked a joke about Canadian healthcare and jumped right into the set, jamming to the song “Salad Days.”

DeMarco’s guitarist gave a shoutout to East Side Mini Mart, which drew a huge cheer from the audience. The band continued with more hits from “Salad Days,” its 2014 studio album, but threw a few tracks from the 2015 LP “Another One” into the mix. “No Other Heart” featured a less electric-sounding vibe from the group, and DeMarco’s wiry vocals tied the set together.

Pairing low-key music with a rock-star vibe, DeMarco even picked up a dildo thrown on stage while he performed. He also crowd-surfed toward the conclusion of his set, during which he caught a cigarette and a lighter, lit the cigarette and returned to stage smoking. The band closed out the evening with an improvised heavy-metal session, ending the weekend’s concerts on a rocking note.


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