A pounding bass-line fills the venue as she starts her set and turns me into an excited 5 year old whilst simultaneously making everyone get down. Tokimonsta is really a package deal; if you’re a fan then you really get a two for one. Her recorded music is beautiful laid back electronic RnB yet her live set is a mix of hip hop/trap and dance breakdowns that can border on dubstep.
This set pulled you along with such intensity that at the end I was left desperately wanting more. As a huge hip hop fan, this is the best dance set that I have experienced since De La Soul at Meredith 2014. Tokimonsta is incredibly talented at working a crowd and has perfect dynamics and contrast in her set. Slower RnB interludes are just long enough before she brings back in a huge dance beat such as that of Missy Elliott’s “Lose Control.”
Throughout the set, there are snippets of music that you recognise; a lot of 1990s to early 2000s hip hop as well as some from the present day. It’s hard to tell exactly what songs are playing as she layers many parts of them over each other. I thought I heard some of Kendrick Lamar and Earl Sweatshirt‘s dulcet tones but maybe I was projecting? Her recorded tracks make occasional appearances but in a new high energy form. “Go With It” was played in a way that really fueled the dance floor.
Tokimonsta is a pleasure to watch as she looked up at the crowd regularly with a huge smile feeding off the crowds energy and she appears to really dig the music she plays.
At this Operatives birthday event it was evident that hip hop was not everyones cup of tea. However the elements of dubstep and house kept the interest of the crowd. There were smiles all round by the end of the set and the Los Angeles star left to a huge applause.
After this incredible hour, I am left wanting another hit and much to my delight. Tokimonsta is still in the country. She will no doubt be killing it at Boney on Thursday, 11 June, do yourself a favour and be there. If you see a mass of blonde hair losing it on the dance floor, join me for a boogie.
Hometown: Los Angeles, California
Latest Release: Desiderium, released September 2014
Sounds Like: A hip-hop party in my ears.
Say What? Toki was the first female artist to sign to Flying Lotus‘ label Brainfeeder
Stay Classy, Rosa