REVIEW: Goldlink | Oxford Art Factory, Sydney

Written By Meshell Webb on 02/16/2016

Photo by Brayden Smith (BCS Imaging).

He may be a stranger to Australia’s scorching summer heat but Goldlink seemed unaffected by the skyrocketing temperature within the Oxford Arts Factory walls. The young D.C rapper had a full house this past Friday along with young support Maribelle (of Carmada’s On Fire fame).


Photo by Brayden Smith (BCS Imaging).

Maribelle deserves to be a name on our radar outside the realm of being a “FEAT” tack on for a better known producer. The songstress won over Goldlink’s crowd within the first few minutes of her set. Sashaying between her keys, drum pads and paying the audience some attention, Maribelle meant business and illuminated to everybody the fact that just calling her a feature vocalist is SERIOUSLY selling her short. Her R&B stylings are addictive and served as the perfect warm up to what the crowd was really waiting for.

After a rocky start (DJ having technical issues) the pressure to deliver was building. Taking it all in his stride, Goldlink bounced onto the stage to the exultation of his fans. Goldlink spits at a words-per-minute rate that could only be rivalled by a hysterical white girl who is mid-rant on her vlog.

With an inside temperature hot enough that the walls and stairs were slick with perspiration, one could excuse Goldlink for a flatter than usual show (expect it even, he’s only human after all). The young rapper surprised all however with a consistently high octane level of energy and only the slightest sheen of sweat upon his brow. Clearly Goldlink spends a lot more time dancing like a maniac in badly ventilated hotboxes than the rest of us.

While the energy cannot be flawed, cutting your set up with a selection of club bangers (including Beiber’s Sorry ) may not have been the best set choice for a crowd that have waited months to see original material. The saving grace of this set interruption was Goldlink’s enviable dance moves and his genuine excitement for playing air guitar to Nirvana. When the rapper returned to his own music we finally had the opportunity to see him shine.

In a moment of cheekiness, Goldlink introduced his Alina Baraz inspired rework Palm Trees by admitting to writing it to impress a girl he really likes (we’re banking on Baraz herself) before launching into the track with the entire audience eagerly singing along. Crowd favourites included the former and his triple j seal of approval track, Spectrum. It was his closer Dance on Me however that offered us everything there is to love about Goldlink. His rapping is obviously impressive as is his ability to dance non stop for an hour and a half but it’s his unique melodic tonality that really draws you in and makes Goldlink an artist in a league of his own.

To sweeten the deal of an all round great night, Goldlink threw multiple thanks out to the crowd and plenty of fans in the front row before going in for an epic group shot, probably to show to all his cool friends back home alongside an anecdote like, “Those Sydney kids were sweaty motherfuckers.”

Photo by Brayden Smith (BCS Imaging).

Photo by Brayden Smith (BCS Imaging).