Lupe Fiasco shuts down Emo’s January 23, 2008Posted by rugwu in Concert, Hip-hop, Photo, Video.
Tags: Emo's, Gemstones, Lupe Fiasco, Nikki Jean
Hip-hop’s anti-hero Lupe Fiasco demolished a two-hour set at a packed Emo’s last night on his second ever trip to Austin. Many were blown away, none were injured. The Chicago rapper who penned won of last year’s most critically acclaimed albums with his dark epic, The Cool, stopped by the live music capitol of the world for a sold out show. As you can tell from the image, it was a special night. Shout-out to my girl Natty for the pics and vids. Details and more photos after the jump.
It was incredibly cold and a little bit rainy but hundreds of hipsters, hip-hop heads and posers with good taste lined up around the corner at Emo’s hours before Lupe was set to arrive. Lu is one of those artists that never really makes blockbuster albums but has amassed legions of devoted, like-minded fans around his unique style and sound. Since his 2006 debut, Food & Liquor, Fiasco has received enough praise from the right people (Kanye, Jay-Z, the blogosphere) to emerge as an icon in hip-hop counter-culture.
When Lupe first came to Austin last year while opening for The Legendary Roots Crew, he was fresh off his first Grammy nomination but with only one album under his belt. His set lasted only about 30 minutes and consisted of basically himself a DJ and a hype man. Fans enjoyed it, but the show was ultimately less than impressive.
This time, Lu took the stage like a seasoned veteran, and with more than a few tricks up his sleeve. After about 30-40 minutes of torture care of California white-boy rap-rockers, Optimus, Lupe emerged to a screaming audience in no less than a Colt McCoy jersey accented with his signature gold watch and gold chain. Perhaps having learned a few things from ?uestlove and the gang, Fiasco was backed by a full live band seemingly assembled from around the country. Live renditions of Fiasco’s catalog were loud and vivrant, and though some of the nuance from the original instrumentals was occasionally lost in the noise, the new sound was definitely welcome. Remarkably, virtually every member of Lupe’s 1st & 15th crew – Matthew Santos, Gemstones, Bishop G, Sara Green and, apparently the sexiest woman alive, Nikki Jean – showed up to rock hooks, back-up and the occasional solo set; most notably Gemstones’ singing/rapping half-time show (look out for his album). Unfortunately, wonder-producer Soundtrakk was absent, but he’s probably making million-dollar tracks for Jay-Z somewhere.
The show was divided into two halves, the first consisting of the vast majority of songs from Food & Liquor, and the last closing out the show with varied selections from The Cool. Lupe, who has expressed fatigue with rap music and discussed plans to retire soon, was anything but tired and at times appeared almost possessed with energy. Performances of Dumb it Down, Kick Push, Little Weapon and Superstar were definitely, as Kanye would say, stadium status. Peep the videos and more photos below.
“Touch the Sky”
“Kick Push” pt.1
“Kick Push” pt.2