Ke$ha w/ Mike Posner @ Eagles Ballroom
Aug. 21, 2013
Pop music is such a competitive field that in order to
separate from the rest of the pack an artist needs a good gimmick. Lady Gaga
sufficiently plays the role of drag-queen provocateur; Katy Perry is the neon
pink candy girl; Taylor Swift the genial, broken-hearted country singer. None
quite hit their mark as well as the sleazy songstress Ke$ha, though, whose
style fits only the dingiest of strip clubs and back alley dumpsters. The
endearing part is that she often has fun with the concept. Where her
contemporaries can be too serious or straight-up ditsy, Ke$ha keeps things
light-hearted and fun without dumbing down her product too significantly.
That’s exactly how she played it Wednesday night at the sweltering Eagles Ballroom, where the excitement and temperature both reached a fever pitch. Even before she came on, the crowd, mostly teenage girls, doused themselves in glitter and face paint, so much so that the streets outside the Rave glistened with it all. After Mike Posner’s capricious set which featured a Bieber cover and him simply pressing play on Miguel’s “Adorn” and Bauuer’s “The Harlem Shake,” the house speakers blared Top 40 hits hurling the crowd into some frenzied dancing and ostensibly playing the better opener. When Ke$ha finally emerged in a purple leotard bedazzled with glitter, the crowd reaction was deafening.
She effectively split her performance into two parts. The first focused on her trashy pop persona and the second on her Kid Rock, American badass rocker guise. Her pop performance was highlighted by her more accessible tunes and bursts of confetti while her harder rocking side displayed gruffer material and more outrageous stage theatrics. An angle grinder shot sparks from the metal plate around her stomach. She sprayed whipped cream into the mouths of her blonde-wigged transvestite dancers. Probably most jaw-dropping of all, even though it looked remarkably uncomfortable, was that she played a guitar.
“I love balls. I do. Do you love balls?” Ke$ha screamed midway through the night. It’s not what you think, however. “My favorite ball is an eyeball!” Her four dancers appeared wearing eyeballs for heads with top hats, which felt like a giant rip-off of the iconic Residents get-up except, you know, these dudes were shirtless. The song that followed was “Blah, Blah, Blah” which chronicled her attempts of finding love, or more specifically, getting laid. “Don’t be a bitch with your chit-chat / Just show me where your dick’s at,” Ke$ha spewed.
But Ke$ha didn’t reach the nadir of her sleaziness until the night was almost finished. “Now is when you take your boobs out,” she exclaimed before gliding through her penultimate song, “Tik Tok.” A dancer dressed as a chicken ran on stage and continually tackled her while she shrieked. The whole scene was amateurish and goofy. Ke$ha proved that she might not be a great role model, but she definitely fills her niche.