The Button FactoryAt first glance, the sticker taped to the front of a keyboard on stage reads “So Damn Good”. Presumptuous? Possibly. Cocky? Definitely. Upon further inspection, it’s revealed as “So Damn Gold”: a marginally less arrogant declaration, perhaps, but one suited to the sort of performer who bounds giddily on stage, flanked by a costumed male three-piece band and a pair of female dancers-cum-backing singers. Make no mistake, Santi White certainly knows how to put on a show. How many other musicians do you know who squeeze a pantomime horse, several costume changes and a stage invasion into their hour-long set?
Surveying the crowd behind a pair of her trademark oversized sunglasses, she kicks off with the aptly-titled Go!, the first song from her new album Master of My Make-Believe, amidst the glittered pom-poms of her dancers.
There’s not a note out of place as she joins in the choreographed routines, dropping slick renditions of L.E.S. Artistes and Lights Out as she shimmies and shakes. The Philadelphia-born singer has always straddled the boundaries of several genres, spending time as a singer in a punk band before releasing her eclectic solo debut in 2008. That miscellany of styles is evident in the setlist, which swings from hip-hop to new wave and pop with flair and ease. Recent single Disparate Youth is received raucously, while a group of star-struck fans can hardly believe their luck when they’re invited on stage to dance during the hip-hop/electronica swing of Creator.
For all the vibrancy of the songs, however, the visual aspect of the show – coupled with White’s magnetic stage presence – cannot be understated. So Damn Good or So Damn Gold? Either way, that sticker’s assertion was correct. A Santigold show is an occasion to remember.