The ladies in Xscape didn’t exactly part company on the best terms at the peak of their popularity in the late 1990s, but after the 2017 BET Awards brought Kandi Burruss, Tameka “Tiny” Cottle, LaTocha Scott and Tamika Scott back together for the first time in 18 years, they mended fences long enough to embark upon “The Great Xscape” Tour. Selling out the United Center and several other arenas across the country into 2018 probably didn’t hurt their chances of reconciliation, though the girl group who came somewhere between En Vogue and Destiny’s Child had no problem picking up right where they left off.
Whether Xscape’s complete reunion is a one-off or the start of a second coming remains to be seen, but at least the ladies were able to slickly tie up some loose ends following all those years apart.
No, Xscape didn’t play any new music within the retrospective set, but “Tiny” and the Scott sisters announced the release of the new tunes “Dream Killa” and “Wifed Up” (neither of which feature Kandi). However, outside of that strange and awkward scenario, the women’s bond over the songs that ruled the radio alongside Mary J. Blige, TLC and Jodeci was bullet proof.Following an “Unsung”-styled video reel that dished on all the prior drama, the members of Xscape descended from their staircases to the flashy “Feels So Good” and met their male dancers on the standard stage to trade moves throughout “Love On My Mind.” However, the foursome was at its strongest during selections that put the emphasis exclusively on their harmonies, including “Softest Place On Earth,” “Tonight” and “Do You Want To.”
Several outfit changes later, that vocal purity continued on “The Arms Of The One Who Loves You” and so did the grooves surrounding “Just Kickin’ It,” though it was the seated and sweet “Understanding” that may have been the finest summation of everyone’s genuine soulfulness. Whether Xscape’s complete reunion is a one-off or the start of a second coming remains to be seen, but at least the ladies were able to slickly tie up some loose ends following all those years apart.
Extra attraction came to the lengthy bill courtesy of the support acts Monica, Tamar Braxton, Zonnique and June’s Diary. Together, they built a bridge between the previous and present course of R&B, but even with her veteran status, Monica in particular kept up the transfixing tradition of her mentor Whitney Houston, Ms. Lauryn Hill and many other vocally blessed notables who came before them.
Click here for more photos of Xscape at the United Center.
For additional information on Xscape, visit TheGreatXscapeTour.com.
Upcoming concert highlights at the United Center include the 107.5 WGCI Big Jam (Dec. 30); Lana Del Rey (Jan. 11); The Killers (Jan. 16); Shakira (Jan. 23); Romeo Santos (Feb. 28); Pink (Mar. 9-10); Eagles (Mar. 14) and Kid Rock (Mar. 16). For additional details, visit UnitedCenter.com and Ticketmaster.com.