The expected headliner, the American singer-rapper put on an hour-long show at the Montreux Jazz Festival on Tuesday evening. Surrounded by his young dancers invoking kitsch bestiaries and Greek mythology, Lil Nas X struggled to compose his aggressive demeanor on stage.
“I will definitely come here, there are so many lovely people here”. Loyal to the confirmation of his homosexuality, the man who blasts racism with sultry texts and clips that shock Puritan America, wowed the audience of Stravinsky Auditorium in Montreux on Tuesday evening and immediately left smiles. Since day one, he has taken advantage of the softness of the shores of Lake Geneva by going shirtless and sharing his experiences on Instagram with his large community and so they know what they are talking about.
rider on a big white horse
Lil Nas X begins his short but energetic performance with his quirky manifesto “Montero (Call Me by Your Name)” in fur and golden gladiator armor, accompanied by eight of his young dancers dressed in long hair, white dresses and boots. Then we tell ourselves that things are starting off well enough… Alas, the concert continuity of the 24-year-old superstar of urban music with billions of cumulative plays on the streaming platform is slowly turning into a farce due to overplay. Has been
“Old Town Road”, a startling marriage of hip-hop, country, rock and pop in Wild West decor, is as romantic as it is obsessed with the separation between black and white, by Lil Nas X was revealed, it is seen here riding on a great white horse.
American singer Lil Nas X at the Montreux Jazz Festival, July 4, 2023. (Thea Moser – FFJM 2023)
humor and spontaneity
The gay kitsch Crazy Horse stage revue then alternately calls for animating an ibis (for “Sun Goes Down”) and a giant minotaur (on “Lost in the Citadel”), as well as unfortunately often play- Beck plays the lyrics and he even recognizes Shazam. Lil Nas X never hesitates to feature more of his famously controversial visuals, until he kisses one of his dancers.
After “Don’t Want It”, “S&M”, “Déjà Vu” and a shortened version of “Sex Talk”, then “That’s What I Want”, delivered in still very choreographic pop versions, Lil Nas X’s World is decked out in blue with a gladiator skirt and Michael Jackson’s legendary “Beat It” that invites itself to an introduction to “Industry Baby”. Way for Lil Nas X to pay homage to his inspirations. A happy birthday song sung to one of its dancers comes to end the very short parade which nevertheless sometimes amuses or even inspires the spectators.
>> To see: Lil Nas X enthralls audience with explosive show
Despite his humor, his lightness, and his stubbornness, we ultimately tell ourselves that the artist who made his gay identity a political standard still uses other forms of his non-conformism to adapt his transformative performances on stage. Could have emphasized more inspired aspects.