lifestyle • 11 Jul, 2017
Things To Do In Saigon This July
A Jiliant Month Stars Soul, Psychedelia and Sneakers
We’re seven into seventeen. And so far so good. Especially since June was a champagne popping, book browsing, hot-tub bathing trip to (Madison) Mars. But July’s never to be outdone. So while you’re contemplating nights in with Netflix and your nearest, we’re here to convince you otherwise.
Trust us, before ’75, Saigon had a swinging funk and soul scene. Local bar bands recreated the super sounds coming out of the States, but switched the lyrics to Vietnamese. The Saigon Soul Revival are bringing it back. Close your eyes and you could be strutting down Dong Khoi dressed all chic in 1960-something. Besides, King Cargo has a cool line in rare Cumbia records, while bass-God Jase Nguyen needs zero introductions.
Back with another two-day banger, this time Land Of Dreams are bringing DJ Bl3nd. The LA native got internet-famous for putting on Halloween masks and playing EDM sets. Over 360 million Youtube viewers tuned in. And now you can too if the scary-faced freak makes it through immigration.
Slowing the pace for a second are psychedelic duo Tengger — Korean instrumentalist and vocalist itta and Japanese musician Marquido. For a sample, listen to the hymnal looping electronica of track Oneul. They’ve taken their analogue synths around Asia, Europe and the US, but this is a special chance to clock their dream symphony in intimate surrounds.
Balancing out the list with a lot of art is Craig Thomas. This group show features fourteen of his favorite Vietnamese artists including Ngo Van Sac, Bui Thanh Tam, Tran Minh Tam, Bui Tien Tuan, and Luong Luu Bien. The show will also pre-empt the gallery’s upcoming solo shows with preview pieces from the five artists who will feature.
The Observatory is an institution. And some of their wildest nights have been helmed by the Heart Beat crew. This time they’re bringing London techno head Sigha. The DJ had his techno epiphany at a London squat party. Since then he’s relocated to Berlin and put out records on Scuba’s Hotflush label, like his first album ‘Living with ghosts’. And his second, ‘Metabolism’ is just out on Token.
Face it, floors are there to be crushed. And Crush the Floor 2017 will pit some of Asia’s top dancers against each other in the play-offs for top prizes. Saigon Outcast will host this Step-Up style tournament again so expect big moves and tense dance offs in the later stages.
The producer and artist better known as Diplo made MIA’s Paper Planes. And he partnered with Skrillex as Jack Ü. So know that he doesn’t choose collaborators lightly. The project that’s taken the most of his time is Major Lazer — conceived as something like a gully version of Gorillaz. After losing founder Switch, the group are now Diplo, Walshy Fire and Jillionaire — a Trinidadian DJ and producer so-called after joking to a friend that a bar he once opened would make him even richer than a millionaire. Blanchy’s have had big names in this past, but this Caribbean artist might be the best.
Saigon’s tuned into sneaker culture hard lately with hidden shops across town and even our own dedicated publication called SNKRVN. The box-fresh collectors’ items have been a big deal ever since Jordan stepped on the basketball court. So expect this packed-out annual event to be filled with Air Jordan aficionados.
Where: Kiz Citi, 48 Hoang Dieu, District 4
When: July 30th
Why: The best place to get your kicks
More info here.
Words by AA