A Night with Bikini Trill at Mercury Lounge in NYC

A Night with Bikini Trill at Mercury Lounge in NYC

Bikini Trill played an intimiate (but LIT) headlining set, opened by up-and-coming artist, Jarv, at the world famous Mercury Lounge in New York City Friday night.

by The Reggae Plug

Yo, have you seen BIKINI TRILL live? If your answer is no, that needs to change immediately. They are currently finishing up their first-ever East Coast headlining tour with special guest JARV, but have no fear, they are back on the road again right after with no plan on slowing down. Their stop in NYC crash-landed at Mercury Lounge, and the vibes were at an all-time high.

JARV, Look Him Up
To set the tone for the night, Jarv brought his absolutely insane bars to the stage. He currently lives in NYC, so this was a hometown stop for him. Hip Hop means so much to me, and I critique rappers very tough, so the first time I saw him live last year, I couldn’t believe what I was witnessing. This dude knows exactly how to engage with an audience and has the confidence to leave it all out there. Before the set started, I was telling someone who had never seen him before, “you’re in for a true Hip Hop experience performed by an artist that cannot be denied”. That statement had him very intrigued, to say the least, and I’m happy he was right up front the entire time for it. When it comes to flows, Jarv is very intense, fun, and smooth. He can rap with a Chopper style yet still break it down slow when he needs to. There’s honestly not a beat out there that he wouldn’t be able to make his own. He’s the only rapper on Earth that will have you leaving the venue singing about a Ford Focus. His witty punchlines had everyone smiling and laughing, but his top-tier skills are what earned the respect of the room. He brought up his roommate and partner in rhyme Nahté, who just like Jarv, has a very unique style and skill. These two killed a couple of songs together in perfect fashion and left the room wanting more. While Jarv might be a strictly Hip Hop artist, he’s very well known to tour with some of our reggae favorites, so look for him on a bill and go catch the madness.

Masters of the Stage, and Our Hearts
Bikini Trill holds a special place in my heart, and they always will. Seeing live music is a true form of therapy for me, so to have to wait twenty-one months after Covid to see a band play was tough. When the tours finally did start back up, Bikini Trill was the first set I saw. I had never seen them and only knew a couple of songs. They were the opener that night but played like a band headed for the Hall of Fame. You could just tell they used that time off to stay sharp and not let any rust set in at all. I didn’t get to meet them that night in 2021. I did, however, get to this time, and they were so welcoming to me, which made that special memory I have of them even more meaningful to me. As far as the music, all they did from that first time I saw them to this NYC show was get better!

LJ is a real professional on that stage, who is not only singing her ass off but also takes the time between songs to genuinely connect to the crowd. Too often do we see lead singers trying to keep a perfect set by just playing music and not talking, and that can come across as uninspiring. My favorite part of her persona is that she has no problem at all simply bullshitting with the crowd and going with the flow of the actual set. If there was a joke to be made, she made it. If she saw someone she recognized, she said hi. That’s a quality in an artist I love. Roach is up there having fun and dropping great bass lines, plus he ripped a dope freestyle for us. Tony is a beast on guitar, shredding away all night behind his beautiful mane like a true lead should. Henry, their drummer, has just joined the group before this tour, but he looks like he’s been there a while and most definitely belongs. He’s actually the only one who had the crowd chanting his name, so I think the rest of the fans in attendance would agree.

First Timers, but Not Last Timers
At one point, they asked who had seen them live before or not. Some hands went up to say yes, including some die-hards, but a lot didn’t. This made me happy for two reasons. One, they got to see a band for the first time which is always a great thing, and two, it made Bikini Trill even more impressive to me. It’s easy to get a room full of huge fans to have fun, sing, and dance all night who have been to many of your shows. It’s extremely difficult to make a room full of strangers do that same thing. Bikini Trill was up for the challenge. No one in the crowd was having a bad time, and before we knew it, everyone was right up to the stage with a smile ear to ear. They even had some royalty cheering them on, as The Clementine Queen Logan Rex of Artikal Sound System was there to support her friends.

I’m glad I got to witness Bikini Trill headlining in New York City for the first time, but I know for sure it won’t be the last.