Vans Musicians Wanted Main Event In Mexico City Is Unforgettable


Vans Musicians Wanted is a global competition to find the best new talent in the world and to give this talent an amazing experience and a platform to introduce themselves to a huge audience.

New artists submit their tunes to be in with the chance to ‘Share the Stage’ with a massive act at one of the House of Vans venues. In the past these headline artists and main judges have included ScHoolboy Q and Anderson Paak.  This year it was Yungblud who picked the winners and took to the stage at the new House of Vans in Mexico City to headline the show.

After over 30,000 demo submissions and a delayed wait for the final show due to the pandemic we find ourselves at the amazing new permanent House of Vans space in Mexico City – a five story building dedicated to Skateboarding, Music, Art, Creativity and Partying.  1200 tickets sold out in under 5 mins for the show and thousands of fans surround the venue in anticipation.

First up – Lemonade Shoelace, the European Winner handpicked by Yungblud for this opening slot.  Lemonade Shoelace have played less than 10 shows to date in their native city of Belfast but tonight find themselves walking out on stage (with singer Ru dressed as an Alien) to a full house of screaming new Mexican fans. For many new bands this might be slightly off putting but LS have been practising like mad since they won this slot and clearly weren’t gonna let this opportunity to be anything less than a total success.  Which it was – 30 mins of dreamy, fun indie that Kevin Parker probably wishes he could of written in his late teens and early twenties.  Success awaits Lemonade Shoelace and it couldn’t happen to better bunch of lads.

Next up, Joy Sales the South American winner. Super cool, super stylish, super modern..super everthing really. Laid back but immediate, soulful but still rockin, Joy brings the spice of Brazil to the proceedings and reminds us all that some people are cooler than we’ll ever be.

And then, the room explodes… Yungblud takes the stage to applause and hysteria that you’d expect in a room 10 times this size. For any of the doubters out there YungBlud is beyond the real deal – a killer band – a set list full of singalong anthems – and the stage presence of a young Mick Jagger with ADHD.

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A Tasmanian Devil in Mexico City, a Gen Z Billy Idol and an artist that commands love and loyalty from his fans in the same way bands like My Chemical Romance and AFI do. The difference here though is there no seperation between Yungblud and his fans. The crowd are part of the band and the band are part of the crowd – this is family and family accepts and loves each for who they are.

This point is beautifully illustrated when YungBlud pulls an emotional fan from the crowd waving a trans flag for a cuddle on stage to sound of one of biggest cheers of the night – on a night soundtracked by arena sized cheers for every move Dom makes.

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Yungblud powers through a 10 song already Greatest Hits set.. kicking off with the sleazy stomp-along glam of ‘Strawberry Lipstick’ closely followed by the Sleigh Bells style electro clash of ‘superdeadfriends’.  By the 4th song of the set the crowd is already being treated to his massive new sing-along single ‘Funeral’ – the main difference being that in the song no one came to his Funeral but everyone showed up tonight to sing it with him.

What better way to follow up his latest single than one of the tunes that started it all off for him. ‘I Love You Will You Marry Me’ turns the whole room into off-beat ska party.

And then as if you think the place cant feel anymore electric Yungblud treats us to ‘Weird’, ‘Life on Mars’, ‘Fleabag’, ‘Think Im Ok’ and ‘Machine Gun’.

An explosive, energetic and emotional show love-in of a show, one that no one in that room will forget for a very long time…

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Words: Tony Arthy

Photography: Tom Pallant

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