Gig Review: Basement Jaxx

Remember back in high school when school socials would roll around and you’d get all excited about rocking out at them and having the time of your life, and then the big night rolled around and you realised all it was was a bunch of bored-looking people crammed into your school hall wishing they could get their hands on some booze?

Yeah. In one, long convoluted sentence, that was Basement Jaxx last Friday.



I’d never been to the Waterfront Lookout before, but the name conjured all kinds of majestic imagery of an open-air concert venue with a perfect view of the harbour and grassy banks where concert-goers could drink in the sights around them while taking a break from the manic crowds dancing like their lives depended on it by the front of the colossal stage.

I pictured giant luxury cruise liners floating by the Lookout with people in tuxedos and evening dresses sipping cocktails on the poop deck while the moon’s reflection shimmered silver on the ocean’s wavy surface.

Instead I arrived to find a fenced-in patch of gravel next to a hall that would be awesome for bingo. At the one end of said hall was a queue seven people deep for a drink and the other a cramped-looking stage with a couple of big screens and lighting rigs.

The patio on the other side of the hall ‘looked out’ at the back-end of the waterfront where the ocean gently lapped random pieces of trash while the wafting scent of rotten fish rolled in misty waves over the people gathered there to smoke and stare in disdainful silence at one another.



I don’t want to sound like a whiny bitch here, so I’m going to gloss over the performances of all the supporting acts and just say that they were all really, really nice (if you eatlivebreatheshit 5fm) and that I definitely would have boogied on down to their phat and original beats had I spent the afternoon drinking rubbing alcohol / had a large portion of my brain removed.

Then the main act took the stage! We knew this not because they came out guns blazin’ and instantly blew everyone’s minds, but rather because like magic, the queues at the bar disappeared and we could make an earnest effort at getting plastered on overpriced Millers.

Basement Jaxx played with very little heart and the crowd could tell. Halfway through their set most people had already left to beat the traffic home. It was embarrassing.

Sure, there were moments when they rocked out and got the crowd pumping, but sadly they were rare. Most of their set comprised of remixes of other artist’s material (including “Sex On Fire” which, for me, was a definite low point) with one or two Basement Jaxx classics thrown in and a long-ass middle section of beats that went nowhere.



However, this is not to say the night wasn’t still awesome for me. Here, in bullet-point form are the parts I liked best:

  • The part when my buddy-down-from-joburg The Glaze lost his mind in the drinks queue, shoved his money into my hands, said he had to go outside for some air and then dropped like a sack of potatoes on the stairs in a dead faint. I missed the whole spectacle (CURSE YOU DRINKS QUEUE!) but reliable eye witnesses said he threw his arms back dramatically in the air and keeled over in a graceful backwards swan dive. Haha! Priceless.
  • The part where my buddy Barbarian took an entire MDMA cap in one go because he thought security was watching him crack it open to take a hit and then spent the next hour fighting to keep his shit together. He ended up going home with two girls he’d just met. Legendary.

So the evening wasn’t completely wasted, but you can pretty much bet your ass any parties that crop up in future with the words ‘5fm’ or ‘Waterfront Lookout’ in them will not be graced by this Tiger.

But hey, that’s just like my opinion, man. I’m sure this will no doubt be greeted by the usual slew of personal abuse my writing seems to attract.

I mean fuck. No one wants to hear it like it is. But that’s a story for another time kids 😉


6 Responses to “Gig Review: Basement Jaxx”

  1. 1 clinton
    September 7, 2010 at 11:21 pm


    I could see the yachts, the tuxedos, the stinky beach, the crappy music and the two girls from the way you described it. mmmmm

  2. September 7, 2010 at 11:50 pm

    It seems the haters are a bit shy today. In that case, I’ll get the ball rolling shall I?

    Eatshitanddie Slicktiger. What the fuck do you know?

    But seriously, this is probably the first time I turned down BJ, in my life – for the simple reason that this was a DJ set. The Jaxx was on Fy-ah! when last in SA and they rocked out with their cocks out at Gallagher Estate – they took me to another level. The black chick that voices Red Alert with that EpicFierce, piercing scream complements and sometimes takes the boys’ music to another level.

    But hey, I didn’t have the pleasure of attending the Lookout or the Rand Airport gigs, so what the fuck do I know?

    • September 8, 2010 at 10:08 am

      Yeah, you’re not the first person to say they were awesome THE LAST TIME AROUND. But you livin’ the the PAST nigga!

      This is 2010 my friend. Year after 2009, before 2011 and in 2010 Basement Jaxx were crap.



  3. September 8, 2010 at 9:46 am

    the last basement jaxx gig in south africa (when they actually played instruments and actually sang) was epic. it was honestly one of the best performances i’d ever seen.

    that said, i’m glad i missed their dj set. quite a few folks have mentioned that is was a bit, well, kak.

  4. 5 Flavid
    September 10, 2010 at 1:29 pm

    I’ve found the problem with Cape Town’s larger events is the venues, they are all a bit shyte.

    Joeys kills a little (actually a lot) in that department.

    Basement Jaxx: 1998 baby!

  5. September 10, 2010 at 1:44 pm

    One might say their set was like masturbating with a cheese grater, slightly amusing, mostly painful.

Leave a Reply

Your email address will not be published. Required fields are marked *

CommentLuv badge