O2 Forum Kentish Town

Given the ever-growing popularity that 100 Gecs has enjoyed since the breakout success of their debut 1000 Gecs in 2019, it almost feels surprising that tonight is the duo’s first international headline show.

This evening’s performance, however, has had several reschedules. The duo were due to head out on a world tour back in 2020 and, after a few postponements, it’s finally happening. These reschedules make the anticipation for tonight even greater. Even stepping out the tube at Kentish Town on this late August Tuesday evening, it’s obvious who else is headed to the gecs show, given away not just by the chants of ‘gecs’ as we exit the station but also the queer catwalk of looks on show.

The buzz of energy and excitement is amped up inside the Kentish Town Forum; a handful of minutes before the pair are due on stage someone at the front of the crowd holds up a phone screen flitting between a picture of the Union Jack to resounding boos and an image of the trans flag to unanimous cheers. This moment, though seemingly frivolous and fleeting, also speaks to tonight’s show as a whole: with their high-octane sound that takes in EDM, punk, nightcore, industrial and then some, 100 Gecs has gathered a community around them through the space they offer to just embrace the ridiculous and have a good time. And, for the next hour or so, this is exactly what they provide.

Taking to the stage, Laura Les and Dylan Brady appear wearing their now signature wizard outfits, as featured in the Doritos & Fritos music video. They open with the pairing of Hey Big Man and stupid horse. The latter fully sets the tone for the evening: raucous, rowdy both on-stage and in the crowd, tonight is fuelled by the gleeful rave-punk chaos that 100 Gecs create.

In the world of 100 Gecs, everything feels like a bit; an inside-joke that everyone, who subscribes to the cult of the gecs at least, is in on. Even when Les pauses to hydrate in between tracks, the moment turns into her rapping about drinking water over a beat from Brady which the crowd enthusiastically chants in time with. This then seamlessly transitions into Fallen For Ü. The quick-witted rapport from Les continues as she introduces the next song as their rendition of God Save the Queen. “Who here fucks with the Queen?” she asks, received with a firm disapproval of the monarchy from the crowd. Following this up, Les shouts, “who thinks the Queen is still alive? Wake up sheeple!” before the duo play a frenetic xylophone interlude that transitions into ringtone.

Alongside 100 Gecs favourites from their debut, the set features cuts from their forthcoming follow-up 10,000 Gecs. This includes the ska-punk banger I Got My Tooth Removed as well as previously released singles mememe and Doritos & Fritos. Even for the unreleased new tracks, the crowd chimes in zealously and it’s clear that, whenever the record – which is yet to have a release date – comes out, it will be voraciously received by the gecs fans.

As the pair pull up stools and acoustic guitars, Les takes the opportunity to quip about Oasis and The Beatles before she and Brady play a stripped back version of gecgecgec, the end of which is marked by the whole venue chanting ‘gecs’. The high-energy carries throughout tonight, the set drawing to a close with money machine and the absurdism of what’s that smell.

Closing on a final encore of sympathy 4 the grinch, the track epitomises the beautifully chaotic meme-addled world that 100 Gecs curate. It’s also a suitably silly end to a night that serves as a reminder that, amidst the seriousness and stress of everyday life, it’s important to revel in the ridiculous. And tonight, 100 Gecs truly offered that space of escapism.