You might not know the name, but you’ll definitely recognise Sofi Tukker’s music. The jungle pop duo have appeared on an Apple Watch ad (with the effervescent ‘Best Friend’), and their tune ‘Johnny’ was featured on the FIFA 17 soundtrack. They’re pros at creating sassy, dancefloor ready pop, rife with earworms you’ll have stuck in your head for days. And from the moment the duo bounded onto stage and started their flawlessly choreographed opening, they brought the energy and attitude that makes their tunes such big hitters to Mad Cool Festival.
It’s a shame then, that technical difficulties could have threatened the whole show. In their set opening, when the band play an extended introduction of ‘Swing’, the sound cut out just before the duo reached the drop; and there appeared to be some early microphone issues on the drums. But no matter, Sofi Tukker handled it like pros. “Shall we try another one” multi-instrumentalist Sophie Hawley-Weld asked the crowd, before launching into the slinky ‘Matadora’. And from then on out, it was smooth sailing.
The duo are a well oiled machine, and a joy to watch. Both Sophie, and her band mate Tucker Halpern, swap between countless instruments (including their mad, rainbow coloured drum machine-cum-art-deco-sculpture in the centre of the stage), and flawless choreography sees them blurring the line between stage and audience. At one point they pluck an audience member out of the crowd and tell him he can only come on stage if he “does the dance”, to which the eager fan was only too pleased to oblige.
And they’re masters at crowd interaction: “This song is about anybody who holds you back from being yourself” Sophie tells the crowd to roars of appreciation, before the bubbling opening riff of ‘Fuck They’ began, and later Tucker gets the whole crowd swaying like they were at a Take That gig. When they play the aforementioned, Apple approved ‘Best Friend’ the tent collectively loses their shit in a moment of pure pop euphoria.
Endlessly fun and a total sugar rush, this is how you want to start your day at a festival. Dancing with a bunch of wonderful, half-pissed strangers to Sofi Tukker’s glorious soundtrack.