Rae Sremmurd, Lil Xan & THEY. Bring the Heat on Day One of the Hot 100 Fest

On Saturday (Aug. 18), music lovers of all ages stampeded their way into the Northwell Health at Jones Beach Theater in New York for the Billboard Hot 100 Fest. After years of providing high-caliber acts on the hip-hop front, such as J. Cole and Big Sean, Day One of the 2018 Hot 100 Fest found a slew of established and rising stars, such as Rae Sremmurd and Lil Xan, gifting the crowd with rousing performances.    

Check out some of the highlights below.     

Taylor Bennett Stays True to Himself  

At 3:20 p.m. EST., Taylor Bennett sauntered onto the Beach Stage to spread knowledge to his ardent supporters. Having recently released his new six-track EP, Be Yourself, Bennett zealously dived into his latest effort, cruising through a series of tracks such as "Rock and Roll" and "Hype Me Up." Don't fret, Bennett didn't forget about his day one supporters, as he dialed back into this archive and performed cuts such as "Favorite Colors" (sans Kyle) and "Broad Shoulders." 

THEY. Brings R&B to the Beach 

Those who were searching for sheer R&B vibes instantly struck gold when they retreated back to the Beach Stage and witnessed THEY. take the stage. The smooth tandem of Drew Love and Dante Jones swept their audience with silky earworms, including "Deep End" and "Ain't the Same." After asking the crowd to put their "wolfpack" signs in the air to signal their allegiance to the group, the two-man army sliced their way through their 2017 cut "Motley Crue." Despite keeping fans enthralled with their Nu Religion heaters, it was their ode to Nirvana on "Rather Die" that ultimately served as the unanimous crowd winner. 

Lil Xan Honors XXXTentacion, Leads Mosh Pit During "Look At Me!"

At 6:30, fans scurried to the Sun Stage to watch Lil Xan torch the Jones Beach Theater. Teenagers came in droves to see the emerging talent perform songs from his Total Xanarchy album. Fortunately, Xan not only shelled out a bevy of hits, he also paid homage to a very special peer of his in the late XXXTentaction.

After combing through tracks like "Wake Up," "Been Bout It" and "Moonlight," Xan saluted his fallen brother, XXX by playing X's own track titled "Moonlight." "Rest in peace to X," screamed Xan. The love didn't stop there, Xan continued to honor the 20-year-old by commanding fans to mosh to "Look at Me!" and sing along to "Jocelyn Flores." "We gonna keep his music alive for the next infinity generations," said Xan. 

Rae Sremmurd Are Selfie Kings & Rock Star Performers

Known to be reliable party-starters, Rae Sremmurd easily delivered the best set of Day 1 with their high-powered performance. The tatted-up brothers Swae Lee and Slim Jxmmi stormed the stage a little bit after 7:30 and rocked the crowd with a stirring opening performance of "No Type." Eager to keep their electric momentum intact, Rae Sremmurd zapped fans with another tuneful smash in "No Flex Zone."

From the gate, Jxmmi and Swae were spotted grabbing phones from the fans and taking Snapchat videos, exuding their rock-star charm. The duo blazed through their laundry list of bangers with "Perplexing Pegasus," "Throw Some Mo'" and "Swang." Desperate to gain Instagram glory, fans carelessly chucked their phones at the group in hopes of gaining social media acclaim -- though some fans failed to get their videos of Swae and Jxmmi because they didn't "unlock their phones."

Besides trucking through their Sremm Life classics, they also delved into their solo SR3MM productions, as well. For Jxmmi, the ebullient star cracked open his Pharrell Williams-assisted single "Chanel." As Swae floated in the crowd and took selfie videos, Jxmmi anchored the reminder of the audience with his vibrant attitude. Then, Swae took control of the reins and sang his solo record "Guatemala," which served as another crowd favorite. To close things out, the group returned back together, and dashed their way through "Powerglide." 

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