The line for the venue hung around the corner filling the street with shaggy teenagers decked out in colorful gear and adults plainly dressed both contributing to a very diverse crowd. Remy Banks killed his set getting the crowd going. Before Earl came on the DJ was warming us up with some beats, “Alright” by Kendrick Lamar comes on, and the joint was hopping. We were all lit and out to have a great time and enjoy the vibes Earl was to dish out. Mostly a young crowd with something to prove, gathering on the outskirts of downtown like cockroaches on a Tuesday night, really exemplifying what I Don’t Like S**t, I Don’t Go Outside was about. The anticipation bubbled over as Earl sauntered on stage, with the crowd surging forward to pack in for a closer look at the young rapper. From that point on we were his, his visceral beats blasting out the speakers and reverberating with the crowd. Like an orchestra maestro he mesmerized us with a slow track like “Grief,” the outro providing a much need intermission to catch our breaths and get ready for the next one. However, “Off Top” had us jumping again. Earl invited the crowd to sing the hook to “Grown Ups” and we kept up properly, showing that Houston was a city to vibe with and that we were really feeling this album. Playing tracks off his last album Doris like “Guild” and “Molasses,” both songs proved to be better known by most of the mass, both having bumping beats and smooth lyrics.
Sweatshirt finished his set with a hard hitting track, “DNA” with explosive lyrics that resulted in the crowd jumping and pushing their way to the front. We screamed the hook and watched eagerly as Na’kel went to do his gut-wrenching verse. Afterwards there was a dull moment which was quickly swept away by a track that hadn’t even made the album. “Hell” was booming out of the speakers and the hook had us captivated with Earl; each one of us maintaining eye contact with the rapper while yelling “if that’s on you, than that’s on me too.” A storybook ending to a beautiful night.
Earl’s voice sounded raw and worn out as he is bringing up the tail end of his tour. His voice served as an example of the maturation he has reached with IDLSIDGO, with it no longer sounds like that of an adolescent’s but of a young man in the grasp of a self-reflective period. His bars are witty, obnoxious, deep and raw and his delivery is skillful and sharp. Definitely can’t wait to see what the talented rapper has to come in the near future.
By Leo Bulaev