Petit Biscuit was, simply, nothing short of exquisitely magical.
He makes a grand entrance: as the music swells, he is draped in shadow at first before he steps out into the light.
He is taller than I imagined, but his face is young, as the light dims across his face, he is a mysterious figure.
He starts off on a high note, a light and floaty song that is equal parts dreamy as it is joyous.
His music seems deceitfully simple at first, but if you listen closely, you can pick apart the careful layers (such depth and texture!) that he weaves together.
He blends a harmony of instruments and sounds to perfection.
Despite his youth, he shows he is no stranger to large audiences, he is confident and comfortable on stage, without a trace of being egoistic.
He talks to us briefly every now and then between songs. As the lights shine bright on him as he steps forward, his French accent makes it a little difficult to pick out exactly what he is saying.
Nonetheless, his voice is boyishly charming, matching his short dark curly hair, and he seems to feed off the vibrant energy and enjoyment of the crowd.
At some point, he speaks French to us (or at least, it sounds like it) and the language slides off his lips, beautifully lyrical just like his music.
There is a sense of earnestness and passion on his face as he plays to the music, he hits the electric drums and thrills the audience with each intense beat.
He plays with his heart, he plays with his soul, it shows with every core of his being.
He plays the guitar (I think it is electric, at least, it sounds like it) and fluidly plays each note, quickly and with emotion.
He seems so adept what he does, it amazes me how he switches from instrument to instrument with such ease—as if he’d been born to do this his whole life.
His music takes us on a beautiful journey, it explores every aspect of the soul: from light to dark, from sadness to beauty and light—no easy feat, especially for an artist as young as he is.
‘Waterfall’ is simply that, a waterfall of emotions. Sweet, bird-like chirps start the song, leading to a wash of beautifully mellow vocals. The beat starts to kick in, and the feeling in my chest rises in happiness (Jump in the water, jump in the waterfall).
‘Sunset Lover’ is so delicately heartbreaking, it manages to both tug at your heartstrings and bring a tear to your eyes. Yet, the tinkly notes of the song convey a depth and beauty that remind you of how sweet life is. To experience each part of life, in every extreme, both the blessing and curse of the human soul.
His new song ‘Break Up’, as he explains, is a little darker and ominous. It starts off simply with guitar strings, hallowed echoes and faint strings in the background. Then it builds and drops to a hypnotic, snake-like rhythm. It sounds almost like Arabic music.
Smoke billows up from the smoke machines at intervals of his darker, heavier songs, you can tell the crowd loves it as they gasp in excitement.
He explains his song ‘Suffer.’
“Our memories are important to build ourselves, even if it hurts a lot remembering them.”
This song, set in a minor melody, is also quite dark and heavy. The eerie bzz-ing of the song, coupled with a sultry singing, (I’m hanging on my own, my own
I’m going out for dinner, having whisky on my own) is both weird and wonderful at the same time.
The lyrics and vocals in his music enchant and haunt, delighting the soul in a way only true artists are able to master.
He claps his hands, gesturing us to follow along, and the crowd enthusiastically does so.
The visuals are perfect for his set, they neither draw or take away from his live performance.
All eyes on him, the set and the lights are a perfect backdrop for his music.
He stands quiet, silhouetted against the stage for his finale.
“Thank you so much, Phoenix. I hope to be back soon.” He says, with a sweet smile.
From where I’m standing, the music is clear as day. Each throb of the music is felt; all around me, people are dancing and I too, am in complete and utter bliss.
As I stand there watching him play, my heart swells with emotion. Around me, the crowd seamlessly melts away, I am lost in the sweet melodies.
His opener, Melvv, put on a good show as well and I recommend seeing him perform as well. I found his future bass a welcome change to the normal house/Dirtybird-styled sets I am accustomed to hearing. I have a soft spot and a love in my heart for future bass music, and wish there were more artists who played this genre. I’m happy to see, of late, it’s been rising in popularity. Melvv was the perfect opener and provided a vibrant and fluid energy to introduce Petit Biscuit. The Van Buren was also perfect venue for this show. The sound and lighting was on point and there was lots of room to move and around and dance (and if you know me well, this is very important!).
18-year-old Mehdi Benjelloun, known as his dj name ‘Petit Biscuit,’ is a French dj and producer. At a young age, he learned to play instruments such as piano, cello and guitar. He later preferred to blend his talents to make electro-house sounds as he found he was able to do much more with the combination of the music. He left school to pursue his career in music and is now touring the US. From an early age, he was inspired and interested by electronica and classical music. His name ‘Petit Biscuit‘ stems from his love of French pastries his grandmother made for him. She would give him the smallest of each batch, pat him on the head, and say “I love you, my little biscuit.”
On 13th May 2016, he released his debut EP, Petit Biscuit.
If you have not seen Petit Biscuit, I highly recommend that you do. It was definitely one of the top five shows I’ve ever seen. I wish I could relive this wonderful, magical night. Even reading my words now seem cheap and paltry to what I had experienced. Even older, more-seasoned artists, fail to move the crowd with music in the way he does. His music speaks in volumes that encompass the heart. I cannot even truly express or describe to you how good he was. I can only try to put into words how I felt, how his music carried me away, how it moved my soul.
Catch him on one of his stops on his US ‘Presence’ tour here.
Trust me when I say, he is one artist NOT TO BE MISSED!
You can follow Petit Biscuit here:
You can follow Melvv here:
About the author:
Singer at Drip Drop Records. Writer/Editor for Rave Hard Radio.
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