Since the 2015 release of their critically-acclaimed third studio album Ego Death, The Internet has been on a musical whirlwind. Nominated for a Grammy in 2016 for Best Urban Contemporary Album, and touring for Ego Death for approximately over a year, the band has been building global acclaim while branching out to focus on solo projects. In the past few weeks to date we got The Drum Chord Theory from Matt Martians, Fin from Syd, and Steve Lacy’s Demo from Steve Lacy just today.
To showcase their musical works as a band and as solo artists, they kicked off The Internet Presents The Internet Tour. The first date was at the newly launched Soulquarius R&B festival in Santa Ana, CA last week, with the first headlining date right here at home in NYC at Webster Hall in the Grand Ballroom. The sold-out show had no openers, starting just after 8:30 PM.
I have been cool with the band for a few years now, so perhaps this column should be entitled “From A Homie’s Perspective”, but you catch my drift. I rushed to Webster Hall after getting off of work at 8 PM, pressed as I believed I would miss the first song. Thankfully once I arrived, there was a very short line, and I was given my wristband quite quickly from the artists’ list. I sped up to the VIP balcony for the Grand Ballroom, and found my place as close to the stage as possible. With my camera in tow, I was ready to experience an evening of grooves and new tunes.
I tested out my camera right before they hit the stage to ensure I had the proper settings, and once the lights went down, it was on.
Patrick Paige II performing with the band cheering him on
The crowd roared, and there appeared Matt, Syd, Chris, Steve, and Patrick on the stage in front of a huge screen which alternated between a huge graphic of “The Internet” in red bubble letters, and an illustration by Matt of all the band members. As The Internet, they performed a slew of songs from Ego Death including “Gabby”, “Special Affair”, “Girl”, “Just Sayin”, and “Get Away”, and “Curse”, which they had never performed live before. I have been to many of their shows over the years, and it was really great to see them perform in front of a sold-out crowd in my hometown, that knew ALL THE WORDS to the songs!
Robert Glasper on the Keys for Syd’s “Insecurities”
Steve Lacy was first up to perform some solo tracks, which included “Looks”,”C U Girl”, “Dark Red”, and “Some.” Up next was Matt who performed “Diamond in da Ruff”, “What Love Is”, “Southern Isolation”, and “Dent Jusay” featuring Steve and Syd. Patrick was up next, performing an unfinished song he wrote for his sister sans bass, with smooth rhymes. Chris followed with an incredible drum solo.
Syd closed out the solo performances, with new tracks from Fin, including “Shake Em Off’, “Know” (MY SONG THO), “All About Me”, “Body”, and the body rolling chune that is “Got Her Own.” A very special guest in the incredible Robert Glasper accompanied Syd on keys for “Insecurities” as he is featured on the studio version.
The show ended with a very hype rendition of “Just Sayin”, where the crowd chanted in unison “YOU FUCKED UP.” Such a highlight of the night. Scroll down for more photos.
Sold-out crowd at Webster Hall
Chris Smith signing drumsticks
*All Photos by Andrea K. Castillo