In the final week of November I was invited down to indigo at The O2 to see afro-fusion star BNXN (formerly known as Buju) perform. It was no surprise that the artist and producer was met with a sold-out crowd at the venue which has a capacity of almost 5000. From solo singles which caught the attention of African Giants Burna Boy to performing his hit collaboration with Wizkid in front of 20,000 people, BNXN has achieved an insane amount since releasing his first-ever song in 2018.
The concert’s start wasn’t as smooth as it could’ve been and getting into the venue was a bit crazy which caused myself and the team I was with to miss the first couple of songs. Eventually, we danced our way into an excited crowd while BNXN performed.
BNXN’s set spanned a number of his projects from earlier singles to his latest EP Bad Since ‘97 and the crowd was with him every step of the way. As well as having a great roster of solo tracks to perform, the star sang his well-known collaborative tracks, including ‘Mood’. At one point, when the venue experienced painful technical difficulties, which of course were not his fault, BNXN managed to command the crowd acapella and delivered a strong vocal performance throughout, supported wonderfully by the live band and backing vocals.
Bringing out British-Nigerian artist Darkoo, who we haven’t heard much from recently, was a great move on BNXN’s part, a the slightly awkward transition, the room absolutely lit up again when he brought out fellow Nigerian star and collaborator Pheelz who shook the crowd with their hit single ‘Finesse’ and his Davido collaboration ‘Electricity’ - the vibes were undeniable.
The show’s ending was somewhat of an anticlimax as the crowd weren’t lucky enough to receive a “thank you, goodnight” from BNXN himself - whether that was down to a curfew looming over the promoters or him feeling overwhelmed by the outpouring of support from the crowd, But I know that BNXN is well-deserving of the love and kudos he gets from his fans and peers. Technical difficulties are out of a performer’s control and he visibly did his best amidst the chaos. I’d happily watch BNXN perform live again!