Scantily clad teens and their mothers gathered at the Majestic Ventura Theater Friday, October 7, for a sold-out Hippie Sabotage performance that felt more like a high school dance.
Mike Gao opened with an underwhelming set of tracks that hardly got the crowd dancing as he chanted repeatedly, “Turn the fuck up.” Next up was rapper Alex Wiley performing fast, hard-hitting rhymes completely in the dark for a somewhat artistic but ultimately confusing set.
After a fan threw up in the pit, Hippie Sabotage took the stage at 10 p.m. in an unconventional fashion, captivating the audience with high-fives and taking selfies with fan’s phones. The set consisted of darker tracks with hip-hop and trap influences, a stark contrast from hits “Your Soul” and “Devil Eyes.” Regardless, the Hippies’ ability to excite a crowd is unlike anything I’ve ever seen. When they played their remix of “Stay High” by Tove Lo, fans were invited onstage and flocked like elephants gathering at a watering hole.
I can see why teens are drawn to the electronic duo — brothers Kevin and Jeff Saurer — from Sacramento, as they have a gravitational stage presence. And the Hippies did not mind breaking venue rules — a reminder to rebellious youth that rules are meant to be broken. Hippie Sabotage are not simply deejays; they are an inspiration for small-town kids with big-city dreams. After talking about their rapid success, Kevin dispensed life lessons to the underaged crowd, saying, “Every single one of you better believe in your fucking self.”