Opening up the evening, Re:Search Wednesday resident Jordan Polovina kept it fresh by bringing new material and Sassfactory member Zoë Simone to the stage. Displaying his next level folk-hop abilities on “Get It”, Jordan blurs the line between genres with heavy trap inspired beats and eerie, folky cello playing. Halfway through his set, he announced he was going to premier some new music; the track that ensued was a grimey instrumental that featured Jordan looping filthy bass sounds over a heavy hip-hop beat. The crowd at Cervantes loved it and he was rightfully awarded a loud applause after the track ended. As he typically does, Jordan was back and forth on the stage for the rest of the night.
Next up, the OG Mikey Thunder stepped up with a Party People set featuring Benjamin’s Vibe and freestyles from Polovina. The floor was full of bobbing heads with Mikey, Benjamin Clark, and Jordan Polovina commanding the stage. A spicy scratch session from Mikey sent the respectable MCs into a rigorous flow. Incorporating elements of funk and hip-hop into his bouncy set, Mikey demanded that Cervantes move their butts using vocal samples on his groovy mix. Reading the vibes like a literature professor, Mikey brought the thunder yet again to prep the crowd for the storm to come.
Upbeat yet downtempo, Brooklyn’s Birocratic brought the funk fusing melodic and palpable beats with impressive live bass playing. His production is as if 90’s hip-hop married 80’s synths yet still flirts with the 2-step style on a few of his tracks. He freshens up nostalgic samples with jazzy chords; a celebration of New York’s rich history while still incorporating his own laid-back electronic feel. Adam Deitch sitting in towards the end of his set truly was the cherry on top of an already sweet set. Though Wednesday marked the producer’s Denver debut, he is already lined up to be back in the Rocky Mountains for Sonic Bloom festival this June. Birocratic’s sound would be just at home in a deep house setting as they would at an old school hip hop function – his versatility is endlessly enticing.
Headlining the evening, Wisconsin native Artifakts mesmerized Cervantes with his ariose, free flowing beats. Stringing together ambient piano samples, luscious draws from the violin, and snair heavy rap beats on “Xavier”, Artifakts set a spectral tone early in the set, building up to funkier, more flavorful sounds later in the set. Commenting on the equipment he uses on stage, Artifakts mentioned he uses the MPC 1000 for samples, an APC 40 for deconstructing songs and mixing them live, and an MPD for shorter samples. A highlight of the set, Artifakts dropped his groovy remix to Pretty Lights’ “Hot Like Sauce”. Artifakts’ take on the song is much more downtempo; the easy-going version kept the dancefloor moving. Listening to the whole venue rap along to Apani B. Fly’s verse from Abracadabra that is featured on the track was pretty tight too. All in all, Artifakts clean production and mixing made his take on hip-hop electro-soul music most enjoyable.
Closing out the night, Philadelphia duo Wax Future hit the venue with a heavy jam electronica set featuring insane guitar playing from Keith Wadsworth and filthy beat production from Connor Hansell. The Wax Mob inducted some new members Wednesday night when the two dropped a ridiculous, deconstructed version of Pretty Lights’ “Rainbows and Waterfalls” which samples Brothers Johnson’s “Strawberry Letter 23”. Keith absolutely slayed the performance with his energetic shredding and juicy riffs. The set was jammy and fun; a refreshing switch up from the sometimes exclusively electronic acts that are featured on Re:Search Wednesdays.