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Kings of the Alex Theatre

Kings of the Alex Theatre

by Mello Moropa / 02.03.2010

“She’s so small! She’s too big to be a midget, but too small to be a normal adult.” My girlfriend says in awe of Yo-Landi Vi$$er, the pint-sized, potty-mouthed, effervescent member of Die Antwoord. You know you’ve made it when people start telling stories about how they knew you way back in standard 1 when you shat your pants before second break. And that’s how it is with Die Antwoord; everyone’s an expert. If you knew them before they were big (and they are big), Jou Ma se Poes in n’ Fishpaste Jar!

Their much anticipated Jozi gig took place at the Alexander Theatre in Braamfontein. A man walks on to stage with a clapperboard. “Die Antwoord! Alexander Theatre, Take one!” Clap! A camera on a dolly sweeps across the crowd and towards the stage, capturing a jungle of raised hands and ironic hairstyles before finally settling on Yo-Landi in all her glorious, back–lit, zefness. She’s wearing an oversized hoodie, and we can’t see her face yet. Her body jerks, in time with the electro-barrage hammering out of the sound system. This is going to be good.

Yolandi Vi$$er

Ninja (you might remember Waddy Jones, Max Normal that guy from Constructus, that guy from the Original Evergreen) makes his entrance and yes the crowd goes wild. I don’t know most of the songs but I’m in the minority. All around me people are reciting each song word for word. These two natives in expensive sneakers and Louis Vuitton backpacks climb up the scaffolding and begin dancing 2 meters above the dance floor. I’m thinking, “these fucking monkeys are going to fall on top of me,” Waddy’s thinking, “that shit looks awesome!” The Ninja tells one of the camera operators to shoot that. And for a split second, he exposes his game, his marketing nous.

View from the Scaffold

Die Antwoord is an audio-visual pop machine. Each move is calculated and they are speeding towards super-stardom faster than a Ford Cortina down the R21. Someone asks me, “but do they have legs, will they last?” We are talking about an ou who’s been chasing his dream for more than 15 years with Thomas Edison like persistence. Back in 2008 Ninja prophetically exclaimed, “Die Antwoord rap crew is going to perform live before the screening of Die Antwoord feature film at the Cannes Film Festival in the overseas.” I hope I’m there when it happens, and I hope to God that people don’t talk too loud in the movies.

Alex Theatre Crowd

All images © and courtesy our friends at OiJozi.com

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RESPONSES (22)
  1. jezebel says:

    mahala you’re sucking the answer to my question right out of my thumb. how much can you cover the same artist who’s just gone big on the underground international before people start calling you sensational?

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  2. Holly Martin says:

    Shit, it was the only thing really happening in jhb this week, what else could they have covered, every other good band was at ramfest, not that I’m saying Die Antwoord are good, I can’t wait for them to go away.

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  3. kid video says:

    “These two natives in expensive sneakers and Louis Vuitton backpacks climb up the scaffolding and begin dancing 2 meters above the dance floor. I’m thinking, “these fucking monkeys are going to fall on top of me””

    What’s the ‘natives’ and ‘monkeys’? Seriously, what the fuck is up with that?

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  4. kid video says:

    What’s with the ‘natives’ and ‘monkeys’ shit?

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  5. Phalafala says:

    kid video is obviously not a darkie

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  6. kid video says:

    Actually im black, not that thats got anything to do with my question.

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  7. Pia Presha says:

    Enough of the DA!

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  8. Tomas says:

    Alternative meanings to the following words:

    Native – A person born to a specific region or place.

    Monkey – a person acting in a foolish, child-like or playful manner.

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  9. Tomas says:

    By the way, Mello Moropa, I really enjoyed this piece – tight and to the point.

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  10. Abraham Esau says:

    Really, there’s no other developments with local music at the moment?

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  11. Zaak says:

    I wonder how Jack Parow feels when he sees how big waddy got using his idea..

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  12. Classy says:

    Those darkies…

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  13. kid video says:

    @Tomas

    Of course, how could i miss that, living as i do, in a country of amnesiacs. This despite the fact that the historical moment, for many, hasn’t even fully ebbed, yet (Sharpeville is still doing what Sharpville do). Go ask someone about it.

    Why are the words ‘natives’ and ‘monkeys’ used to indicate black people in an otherwise a-racial article about an internet meme band? That’s all I want to know.

    I think this is a straightforward question.

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  14. Andy says:

    let’s try get Mello up in here to clarify…

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  15. Headshrunk says:

    Perhaps they were two white kids, who knows, and by natives he actually meant – Zef. People who seemed native in this freakshow environment.

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  16. Happy Brown Baby says:

    Nothing else was happening in town…straight up lazy considering that down the road at OST, Kenzhero threw an amazing Party People featuring the most famous unknown band Kwani Experience featuring Molefe of the Blk Jks on bass. But hey monkey native music is only for the majority.lol

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  17. Bobby Brown says:

    All i want is to make sweet anal to ninja, and whisper good night my sweet prince while stroking his hair.

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  18. Luckmin says:

    Fuck that, call it how you see it. I’d call a person climbing a scaffolding at the jol a monkey too, pink, brown or any other shade. Why bring this stupid race card into everything? It just gets in the way.

    Keef article ekse! I dug it!

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  19. Tomas says:

    never mind

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  20. kid video says:

    @Tomas

    Don’t grow despondent.

    We want the same thing.

    These are just questions.

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  21. Mello Moropa says:

    Wow I didn’t even know this was up here

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  22. Mello Moropa says:

    Oh the natives (monkeys) are to kids from a band called Spaza shop boys. Natives – as in they come from jozi. Monkeys- as in they are climbing up walls. I like the way these two words irritate some people

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