You write the reviews: N*E*R*D, Corn Exchange, Edinburgh
Reviewed by Benedict Shaw
Tuesday 02 September 2008
"Thank you for your eclectic taste," Pharrell Williams told the crowd halfway through N*E*R*D's energetic 80-minute set. He was undoubtedly referring to the diverse musical genres his band explores, from the Hendrix riffs of "Backseat Love" to the Beatle-esque "Stay Together". Pharrell even pays tribute to his beloved Steely Dan – for 10 minutes, he and the crowd were happy to stand back and watch the band perform an interlude.
This was the place I wanted to be right now. Watching one of hip-hop's most popular and talented purveyors collaborate with fellow Neptune Chad Hugo and schoolfriend Shay, producing brisk beats that get you moving and whose lyrics switch from PlayStations to unlatching a girl's bra.
But there was an early bum note, when Hugo left the stage during the opener, "Anti Matter". He never returned. It was unclear why, but it did mean that the mellow chords that flow through "Run to the Sun" and "Maybe" are missing. These cuts still sounded great, but Hugo's knack for Stevie Wonder-style chord progression are a vital part in the rock/soul combo the band achieves.
Ranging from the hip-hop of "Brain" to drum'n'bass in the current single, "Spaz", N*E*R*D have the ability to cross genres but still serve as a refreshing act in what tends to be a monotonous musical industry. In short, Pharrell wants to have fun, and this live performance supported this statement, as he pranced all over the stage, dancing crazily and often stopping to wave to screaming girls in the crowd.
Towards the end of the night, he brought out two young teenage boys, and promises them that the crowd will jump manically if they do. Cue the dirty funk of "Lapdance", and a whole room moshing, losing their inhibitions and simply having a good time. A bra thrown on to the stage that was picked up by a grinning Pharrell was the perfect image for the night, which ended with the group's most celebrated songs.
In similar fashion to "Lapdance", the band mustered a number of girls to stand on stage, this time in a line. The excitement in the venue grew as everyone knows which song was about to be belted into. Finishing with the sexy and infectious "She Wants to Move" and a rendition of the White Stripes's "Seven Nation Army", N*E*R*D confirmed their undeniable value in today's music industry.
You write the reviews...
E-mail your 500-word review of an arts event of your choice to email@example.com. For terms and conditions, see www. independent.co.uk/freelanceterms
The best TV shows and films coming to the servicetv
Watch the new House of Cards series three trailerTV
Oscars 2015It was the first time Barney has compered the Academy Awards
Oscars 2015 From Meryl Streep whooping Patricia Arquette's equality speech to Chris Pine in tears
Oscars 2015 Mexican filmmaker uses speech to urge 'respect' for immigrants
TV ReviewThe intrigue deepens as we delve further but don't expect any answers just yet
Razzies 2015 Golden Raspberry Awards 'honours' Cameron Diaz and Kirk Cameron
Arts & Ents blogs
- 1 Raif Badawi, the Saudi Arabian blogger sentenced to 1,000 lashes, may now face death penalty
- 2 PornHub turns masturbation into energy in bid to save the planet
- 3 Robert Mugabe eats a zoo for 'obscene' 91st birthday party
- 4 The remarkable archaeological underwater discovery that could open up a new chapter in the study of European and British prehistory
- 5 The jihadi girls who went to Syria weren't just radicalised by Isis — they were groomed
Broadchurch series 3: David Tennant and Olivia Colman to return for third season, ITV confirms
Downton Abbey Christmas special 2014, review: Love is everywhere, actually
Indian Summers recommissioned: Channel 4 confirm a second series of British Empire drama
James Bond: Director Sam Mendes teases clips from upcoming 007 film Spectre
Fifty Shades of Grey movie shows first sex scene 'after 40 minutes'
New theory could prove how life began and disprove God
This is what it's like to be dead, according to a guy who died for a bit
'Jihadi John': CAGE representative storms off Sky News accusing Kay Burley of Islamophobia
Ukip would cut billions from Scottish budget to fund English tax cuts
Russia's roadmap for annexing eastern Ukraine 'leaked from Vladimir Putin's office'
Ukraine crisis: Top Chinese diplomat backs Putin and says West should 'abandon zero-sum mentality'