Dec. 7, 2002
Oakenfold Takes "Bunkka" on Road, Debuts Band
By Randy J. Klodz
Heralded by many as the world's best DJ, Paul Oakenfold launched his
genre-stretching tour, in support of his recent album, "Bunkka," in late November
that saw his show storm into Chicago by making a stop at the Riviera Theatre
on Dec. 7.
A venue that's mainly a home to rock shows, the Riveria was transformed
into a club-goers delight, fit enough to resemble scenes out of "A Night at
The Roxbury," only Hollywood actor Richard Grieco was not the celebrity of
focus, Oakenfold held the limelight.
For the first time in his successful career, Oakenfold held his performance
with more than himself and his DJ equipment. Since "Bunkka" has more of a
pop/rock influence—with famed guest vocalists Ice Cube, Nelly Furtado,
Perry Farrell and Crazy Town's Shifty Shellshock, among others—leading
the way, there comes the need for a "rock-like" show set-up. As the lights
dimmed, Oakenfold—greeted by the crowd to chants of "Oak-eee," waves
of glow sticks and spinning lights—took the stage with guitarist/bassist
Tim Hutton of Groove Armada and director/drummer John Tonks of Tricky at his
The backdrop for the stage consisted of a large projection screen displaying
images of nature and music video-like portrayals of each of the aforementioned
guest vocalists. Oakenfold's show opened with an extended version of "Time
of Your Life," that showcased the power of motion pictures, color and sound.
Former Porno for Pyros and current Jane's Addiction singer Perry Farrell appeared
on the screen, singing his vocal parts in sync with Oakenfold's band.
"Hey Chicago, it's great to be back," Oakenfold said in his Austin Powers-meets-Pierce
Brosnan vocal tone upon the completion of "Motion." "This is our first run
with this set-up and we are excited."
Oakenfold continued on, mixing his way through tracks "Hypnotised," and
the radio hits "Ready Steady Go" and "Starry Eyed Surprise," which features
the raspy-smooth vocals of Crazy Town singer Shifty Shellshock, "Oh my starry
eyed surprise / Sundown to sunrise / Dance all night / We're gonna dance all
night / Dance all night to this DJ." The audience endlessly bobbed and weaved
to every electronic loop, drum beat and guitar strum offered throughout the
Oakenfold's current tour of the United States is scheduled to end on
Dec. 21 at the Wiltern in L.A. For more information on Paul Oakenfold, or
this tour, visit www.pauloakenfold.com.