Ahmed Gallab, who goes by Sinkane, filled the audience with frenzy as he and his band brought modern jazz and a harmonious blend of melodies to the Majestic Café on Nov. 20. Sinkane created the seemingly odd but perfect mix of electronic rock, jazz and Sudanese pop. Joining the band for the night was pop artist Steven A. Clark and electronic artist and Detroit native Duane the Brand New Dog.
As the opening act of the night, Duane grasped the attention of the audience not so much by his vocals, but by his overly dramatic stage performance. His attire included leggings, sunglasses, a beret, black lipstick, and no shoes, because he lost them mid-performance.
Overcompensating for the lack of a skilled voice, Duane threw cups filled with Kool-Aid at audience members, destroyed his props on stage and crawled on the floor around the feet of the audience while cackling, which sounded like a witch’s voice from an overplayed horror movie. With arrhythmic and off-key sounding music, still-standing audience members didn’t seem to know how to react to the performance.
In an interview after the show, Duane explained that his onstage persona is much different than his shy and serious personality off stage.
“I’m a horribly narcissistic, neurotic and self deprecating person. I think a lot about what people are thinking of me, so when I get on stage, I turn into a messy geek. I’m a clown, but no one is laughing,” Duane confessed.
Duane prepared a tough and critical crowd for Steven A. Clark, who managed to compensate for Duane’s lack of a compelling opening act.
Clark’s singles “Can’t Have” and “Lonely Roller” from his latest album got the audience on their feet and swaying to the beats in admiration of his strong vocals, yet soft spoken voice. Clark’s music is a mix between blues, pop and romantic R&B. With a bit of a similar sound to musical artists Kid Cudi, Frank Ocean and The Weeknd, Clark still manages to let himself stand out in the R&B and pop world.
The sound for the night then changed to a slow jazz-rock tempo as Sinkane and his band members took the stage. Each player performed with passion, originality and seemed to have escaped into his own world as they played, unaware of their wooed audience. With a smile and closed eyes, the drummer brought a very much needed rhythm that spiced up each song. So much that his drumming even overpowered Gallab’s voice. With a vast majority of sound effects and instrumentals, Gallab switched throughout the show between his electric guitar and piano.
The band started the show early on with their most popular hit single, “How We Be”, which features a variation of instruments such as the flute, and has an unsurpassed, funky beat, strong bass and an undeniable sublime groove. The drummer then wound down and let the guitarists shine in their solos as they played “Jeeper Creeper”, which was mostly instrumentally fast paced with echoed words throughout the song.
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Watch Sinkane perform live: The South End Youtube