Tonight we're going to Protoje's Ancient Future Live show in Hope Gardens. It's going to be one of those live shows where a group performs an entire album, song for song, live on stage. Pretty unusual for a Jamaican live show, but there are more unusual things going on here. The ticket price for example, which is JMD 1500 presale and JMD 2500 at the door. The venue, no concrete yard but the lush and green surroundings of Hope Gardens. And the amount of people that came out to see Protoje and the Indignation, despite the JMD 2500 ticket price: the venue will be packed to capacity tonight. I'd say anywhere between 2000 and 3000 people.
We'd managed to get some of the final presale tickets which clearly stated 'showtime 8 pm'. Not really believing this, we didn't want to run the risk of missing out on the action so we arrived at 8. Yaadcore was playing in a still nearly empty (and huge) venue. By 9 pm it starts to full up and by 10 pm the show's about to start. The venue is on a hillside with green grass. People are sitting on the grass (unusual) and some of them bring their own chairs. I can't deny the fact that the whole setting is pretty uptown. Some people set up their chairs way up in front of the stage and when the show starts and people come out and stand in front of them they complain that they cannot see the artist anymore. Sigh!
Just like Chronixx presented himself to the musical scene with his band the Zinc Fence Redemption, it is the Indiggnation band that is an essential part of the Protoje and the Indiggnation setup. One of the best reggae bands out there if you ask me, the Indiggnation tonight adds an entire horn section (with Dean Fraser on saxophone) to its already considerable line-up and impressive sound. The show is just fantastic.
Ancient Future is an album filled with great songs and they're all on the menu tonight. What's more: all the guest artists featured on the album will be here tonight performing with Protoje. Oh yes, that means Mortimer on Protection, Sevana on Leave gone cold and Sudden Flight, Jessey Royal on Sudden Flight, Kabaka Pyramid on The Flame and Chronixx on Who Knows. This is some serious entertainment! Not featured on the album, Assissin also passes through with his song Mix Up.
When leaving the stage Protoje thanks the audience for coming out in their numbers. Protoje says there are no sponsors for the event, and clearly the impressive and professional stage setup including awesome video wall must have cost quite a few dollars. So while the artist and band are grateful for the massive turnout, the audience is thankful for what they have just seen and heard. A night to remember.