Let’s be honest, DJs often get a bad rap for having great singles but incredibly boring stage shows. Electric laser shows are too often used to distract from the fact the DJ is doing relatively nothing on stage, aside from hiding behind their Macbook Pro for 45 minutes and pressing a button every now and again. Not only is this incredibly boring, it doesn’t establish any connection between the artist and their fans, and defeats the whole purpose of going to see a live set rather than playing it at home on Spotify.
However, Gold Coast producer Mikey Perry, more commonly known as Paces, presents one of the best live sets in Australian music right now. Bursting at the seams with raw passion, enthusiasm and a knack for knowing exactly what his fans want and when, Paces is wholly addictive to watch take the stage. There was no static element to last night’s show at Oxford Art Factory, which saw the man working the decks, playing around with drumsticks and sample pads, singing along with the crowd and generally exuding happiness with every song. A slightly-kitschy visual projection of everything from bananas to ice creams nicely complimented the tropical vibes floating around, and the two dancers who appeared on stage at various points throughout the night continued to amp up the crowd.
The past few months have seen Paces go from strength to strength, most recently being splashed across social media for his colourful reinvention of LDRU’s Keeping Score for Triple J’s Like A Version, featuring Guy Sebastian. His debut album Vacation provided the backbone of last night’s set, which saw crowd favourites 1993 (No Chill) and Nothing’s Forever stand out as obvious highlights, and a strong live performance of Sometimes by Esther Sparkes. Aside from his bouncy originals, Paces also served up a string of remixes, such as Tkay Maidza’s Switch Lanes, Alison Wonderland’s U Don’t Know and Ou Est Le Swimming Pool’s Dance The Way I Feel. The later the night got, the more expansive the sound was and the crowd’s energy never faltered.
Perry is without a doubt one of the most engaging producers that Australia is blessed enough to have. Last night’s show saw him humbly thank everyone for coming and selling out the venue, amidst dropping tune after tune to a sea of sweaty, adoring fans. As a man who radiates genuine love for his music and the people who support him, we can only expect to see big things from Paces in the future!