Kali Uchis Charmed Houston Fans with her Youth, Vocals, and Style

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buy Pregabalin Lyrica uk On the first Saturday night of October, a line of people had already extended down four blocks long before the doors to Warehouse Live opened at 8:00 pm for the Kali Uchis concert. Warehouse Live security was efficient and thorough in checking bags and managing the crowd, so the shocking queue of concert goers did not prove to be a problem. The group of fans waiting outside consisted mainly of young adults and teenagers dressed in trendy clothing including mesh shirts, Vans sneakers, large hoop earrings, ‘clout goggles’ and other various clubwear.

Photo Credit: Ibrahim Abbas

Almost an hour after doors to the venue opened, Uchis’ Brooklyn-based opening band, Phony Ppl, came onto the stage. Bari Bass, ironically the bassist, was wearing a black Phony Ppl merchandise hoodie and Elijah Rawk, lead guitarist, had donned a floor length red cape. Vocalist Elbee Thrie began to hype up the audience by saying he loved seeing all the “sexy people” in Houston, and asking them to be part band by shouting “baby” upon hearing him say “sexy.” Matt Byas (drummer) and Aja Grant (keyboardist) kept up without breaking a sweat.

Phony Ppl first played songs from their debut album, Yesterday’s Tomorrow, and with every guitar solo from Rawk and mention of love from Thrie, the crowd would cheer vivaciously with appreciation. After three songs, Thrie mentioned they were working on a new album that “will go to your heart,” and played a song from the new project called “Before You Get a Boyfriend.

Photo Credit: Ibrahim Abbas

The band has a lot of pride for their hometown, Brooklyn, and have built a strong bond with each other that was established from their humble beginnings. Most noteworthy, Phony Ppl consider themselves to be one person: “We are your boy. Not your friends. Not your mans-s-s-s-s. Your boy!” Phony Ppl does not have to make an effort to showcase their respect and gratitude for each other; all five band members are technically very talented at playing their respective instruments and their appreciation comes naturally. The synchronicity and depth of the group’s talent was especially evident towards the end of their performance, when spotlight was given to each band member. At the close of their set, Phony Ppl threw water bottles to the crowd, getting a loud round of applause and cheers from the audience.

Approximately half an hour later at 10:28, Kali Uchis walked onto a stage decorated with poinsettias in a slinky pink dress, tall white boots and sparkling hoop earrings. The crows was screaming as the up-and-coming Colombian-American singer climbed up a set of white stairs to begin performing songs from her debut EP, Por Vida.

This was Kali’s first time in Houston, but the crowd connected with her instantaneously, singing the ad libs and hook for every song. Uchis’ sensual dancing and rhythmic hip movements captivated the audience while her angelic appearance dazzled them. She was provocative and sexy, but not too much so to seem promiscuous.

Mentioning a new album in the works, Uchis gave her fans a taste of what she was producing by performing a new song. She then turned back time to when she first taught herself how to make music and sang one of her earliest recorded songs, “What They Say.” Also met with enthusiasm from her fans was Uchis’ cover of “Sabor a Mi,” sang in Spanish. The Hispanics in the crowd were especially approving of the manner in which Uchis kept her Colombian culture alive with a sultry version of the Latino classic Suavemente.

Kali’s strong vocals ranged from sweet and angelic to powerful and robust, and her band complimented her live performance so well, making it sound just as good as her recorded tracks. The Warehouse Live Ballroom with a capacity of 1,650 hardly seemed large enough to contain the Uchis fans.  Uchis’ harmonious sound echoed through the room, and because she is so at home in her space, she made the stage her own.

While she has a sincere talent for evoking passion in a crowd, Uchis’ performance does seem to be a little more style than substance. However, with a large following of devoted fans and a gifted voice, Uchis’ first show was a remarkable experience. The minute she left the stage the crowd erupted with: “Kali! Kali! Kali! One more song!”

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