It wasn’t a lack of swagger that failed to draw a sizable crowd for N*E*R*D at the Joint on Saturday night—frontman Pharrell Williams and crew had plenty of that. Likely it was the vert ramps and the fact the concert was a part of the Dew Tour Championship Weekend rather than a typical concert that scared general audiences away—and that’s a damn shame, because from punny, crowd-pleasing opener “Everybody Nose” to the mini-riot-inducing pair “Rock Star” and “Lapdance,” N*E*R*D fully engaged the audience that was there.
Before the latter, the charismatic Williams instructed the crowd to crouch low to the ground—the physical embodiment of what life (the Man!) tries to do to people who are different, he explained. Sure, it was a bit literal and hokey, but when the crowd burst back to its feet and into the anthemic “Rock Star,” it was difficult not to lose a bit of control in the fist-pumping, bouncing swarm of people. Who knew Doing the Dew could be so fun?