Outkast Dazzle in Hangout Festival Finale
It may be 2014 but last night as the Hangout Festival came to a close, Outkast certainly made it feel like 1994. As the hip hop titans took to the stage to celebrate their 20th anniversary, fans (some who waited at the Hangout Stage all day) were completely enthralled from the opening notes of “B.O.B.”
As reports of tension and a lack of interest surfaced following their uncomfortable return to the stage at Coachella, last night was anything but as both members seemed invigorated by the raucous crowd, family and friends that surrounded the stage. The opening nine tunes saw the group dig into every era of their career including “ATLiens,” “Rosa Parks,” “Aquemini” and more.
One of the biggest complaints about the early Outkast sets was the disjointed nature of the solo sections, where Andre and Big Boi would take turns delivering solo material. Last night, the chemistry between the two bred a flawless transition as Big Boi kicked it off with “Kryptonite (I’m on It)” and invited frequent collaborator Sleepy Brown on stage for “The Way You Move.”
After the crowd chanted for Andre 3000 to come back out, the singer (decked out in a black jumpsuit with “big girls are beautiful to me” on it) dug into his solo repertoire with “She Lives in My Lap” and “Prototype” before inviting some ladies on stage to shake it like a Polaroid picture on “Hey Ya!”
When Big Boi and Andre reconvened for the closing run, they took us way back to their 1994 debut Southernplayalisticadillacmuzik with “Hootie Hoo” (a chant the crowd started nearly an hour before the group took the stage), “Crumblin’ Erb,” “Player’s Ball” and the title track from their debut.
After they appeased the “real Outkast fans” it was time to deliver the hits and shut it down, and did they ever. “Roses” led into “So Fresh, So Clean” before “International Player’s Anthem” and “The Whole World” brought the 24-song set to a close. There would be no encore but fans didn’t seem to mind, as many danced out whatever they had left after a long weekend.
While the focus was certainly all on the Atlanta duo, the performances throughout the day proved worthy of a finale. While Caked Up was getting things started in the Boom Boom Tent, one of the most popular attractions throughout the weekend, Blackberry Smoke was delivering their brand of rock and roll on the Chevrolet Stage.
Later in the day, Capital Cities took to the Hangout Stage for one of the rowdiest sets of the day as the band delivered songs such as “Safe and Sound,” “Kangaroo Court” and “I Sold My Bed But Not My Stereo.” They also dipped into their cover repertoire with Prince’s “Nothing Compares 2 U” as well as Madonna’s “Holiday.” Trumpeter Spencer Ludwig then jumped over to the Chevrolet Stage to jam with Portugal. The Man during the reprise of “Purple Yellow Red and Blue.”
Setting the stage for Outkast was Jack Johnson on the Chevrolet Stage. The singer/songwriter, who celebrated his 39th birthday yesterday, played a spirited 23-song set of his beach-made tunes including “Sitting, Waiting, Wishing,” “Radiate,” “Bubble Toes” and so many more. Johnson also worked in a cover of Steve Miller Band’s “The Joker” before closing his set with “Good People,” “Angel” and the finale—“Better Together.”