Published by the Students of Johns Hopkins since 1896
May 23, 2024

Flo Milli at the Spring Concert: Students lose themselves "In The Party"

By TIMOTHY MCSHEA | May 2, 2024

ag0a7475

STEVEN SIMPSON / PHOTO EDITOR

Flo Milli riles the crowd at the latest Spring Fair Concert, proving the negativity at her announcement was ignorant and premature.

The 2024 Spring Fair Concert at Hopkins, featuring singer-rapper Flo Milli, was electrifying. The initial announcement of her as the main Spring Fair Concert artist sparked some unhappy discourse among students, but those who attended the event went home exhilarated by an extremely fun performance.

As students filtered in and found their place in the crowd, DJ Flow was hyping everyone up and taking song requests through Instagram DMs. He did a good job catering to the audience. I’ve never seen a group of people get so hyped up from a warm-up DJ, but it turns out all it takes is “Surround Sound” and “Gasolina” to get the Hopkins student body rolling.

Electronic dance music trio Cheat Codes had a killer opening set, with some really cool drops, energizing the crowd. They repeatedly shouted out the center of the crowd who had their hands in the air the whole performance. By the end of the set, some groups on the outskirts were more than ready for Flo Milli. They were visibly disappointed to see DJ Flow come out again, but it was only a short few songs before the smoke turned pink.



The smoke machines spewed out so much smoke that I couldn't see the screen. I couldn’t even see her as she hopped on stage, as I was farther back than most. First, I heard before I saw — the idiosyncratic ad-lib “Flo Milli shit” boomed to my left through the speakers as the crowd roared. “Understand,” the intro track off her latest studio album, Fine Ho, Stay, played.

This exhilarating entrance was halted by a mishap — there’s always a mishap. As I mentioned, I could hardly see her. But before I could see her clearly, she was gone. There was a quick shot of her running in front of the crowd which lit up the screen, but when it went away, the screaming of the crowd devolved into a prolonged chatter. It was tough to hear those around me, but gossip eventually reached my ears. Some joked that she needed a bathroom break. It turned out to be a microphone issue.

When she got back up on stage, her set was electric. The hype was reminiscent of indie group COIN’s performance in the fall. Flo Milli’s stage presence was undeniable. In a hot pink bikini and buttoned trousers with a fitting light pink weave, she strutted gleefully around the smoke machine spilling out onto the crowd. The back screen had an early 2000s-style graphic of pink and blue designs — enigmatic sketches of fish fighting in a sand pit — somewhat juxtaposed by the clear figure of Flo Milli hopping on the front edge of the stage.

She started the set with some heavy hitters — after “Understand” and “May I,” she immediately went into two of her strongest tracks: “Like That Bitch” had the right energy to make the whole audience chant, and one of the biggest tracks off her debut album and “Beef FloMix,” spewed its syncopated synths into the waving arms of crazed fans.


STEVEN SIMPSON / PHOTO EDITOR


Then the performance took a lighter turn with some beloved songs off her latest project, such as “Edible” which features cheesy guitar riffs under an addicting, understated hook. “Conceited,” a punk rap thrasher, paired well with the more chill “Mean,” a $NOT track which went viral on TikTok for Flo Milli’s catchy feature: “small waist, pretty face and a big bank.”

The real sleeper track of the night was “Bed Time,” a record off her 2022 LP, You Still Here, Ho, which has some empowering girlboss lyrics: “I hate that bitch / Every time I see her, I’ma shank that bitch.” 

This selection had a very select purpose; introducing her next song, Flo Milli made a soothing confession. She really might “hate that bitch,” but deep down, at least in her relationships, she’s a “lover girl.” And just like that, the pitched up vocals of Jin Kirigaya, originally sampled for a track by Babyface Ray, filled the room. In other words, Flo Milli’s hit single “Never Lose Me,” her sweet love song, was next.

I was expecting the song to play at some point, but for the sake of time, she actually cut it short. The next song, “In The Party,” was the encore, a track I wasn’t fully familiar with (the crowd surpassed me in Flo Milli knowledge, and were extremely happy that the song was included). I’ve gained a new appreciation for the song since, and it seems to be one of her top ten streamed songs on Spotify — regardless of any of this background information, the song slapped. Audience members were either chanting the backing rhythm of “la la la”s or rapping with Flo Milli word for word. It almost seemed orchestrated.

When Flo Milli left the stage, and the concertgoers sheepishly trailed back to the exit, I noticed that no one looked unsatisfied. I saw gleaming smiles from ear to ear, and I was genuinely happy. For so many of the Spring Fair Concerts I’ve attended, the exit was somewhat grim, and I could normally feel a tone of criticism, however small. Needless to say, Flo Milli changed that culture, and I was unable to find a single soul who didn’t find the experience worthwhile.


Have a tip or story idea?
Let us know!

Comments powered by Disqus

Please note All comments are eligible for publication in The News-Letter.

Podcast
Multimedia
Be More Chill
Leisure Interactive Food Map
The News-Letter Print Locations
News-Letter Special Editions