One of the qualities that separates Jack U, the EDM supergroup of Diplo and Skrillex, from their dance cohorts at music festival is the duo's inherent playfulness. Diplo and Skrillex play radio records and provide face-melting drops, but do so without ever taking themselves -- or their set list -- too seriously.
Case in point: their night-capping performance at the Voodoo Music + Arts Experience on Friday night (Oct. 30) began with a mash-up of the theme from Halloween and Soulja Boy's "Crank Dat (Soulja Boy)." The Lion King theme was the most ridiculous song the duo played during its 90-minute showcase... until they dropped Whitney Houston's "I Will Always Love You." Within Jack U's many treats are a few delightful tricks, too.
That zaniness felt fitting of the overwhelming, costumed crowd at Jack U's performance, which included a "Thriller" remix and a man dressed as a Febreze bottle dancing between the two DJs. "I swear to God, I think you guys killed Diplo with your voodoo!" Skrillex declared late in the set while eyeing a sprawled-out Diplo; fortunately, the producer sprung back to life while dancing with a black Jack U blanket draped over his head.
Jack U fed the crowd the ubiquity it craved with Drake's "Hotline Bling," Beyoncé's "7/11" and three Fetty Wap songs; the duo saved its own year-defining single, "Where Are U Now" featuring Justin Bieber, for the finale. Sadly, the Biebs wasn't in attendance (and Jack U outrageously missed an opportunity to play "Sorry," his new Skrillex-produced single), but newcomer Kai did come out to provide vocals for the sensual "Mind." The reality is that Skrillex and Diplo don't need hypemen when their hyping skills are so on-point; the pair spent the entire set goading onlookers to jump, spin around, scream and generally demonstrate why New Orleans rules as a festival destination.
Jack U literally provided the fireworks on Friday night, with a visual show that almost set the stage ablaze and left streamers tangled in the adjacent stadium lights. However, the best sights of the show existed in the Hallow's Eve audience, which spent 90 minutes grinding, flashing, making out, hula hooping, stumbling and proudly displaying its costumes. Mario locked lips with a female Yoshi; two guys dressed as bananas found another guy dressed as a banana, and a bananarama ensued. Jack U jacked up the crowd for Saturday's Halloween festivities, and set Voodoo forth with a yellow smile.