The poster is wrong, but I couldn’t find the updated poster. Joe Budden and Classified filled in for Obie Trice after he couldn’t get into Canada.
Spoiler: I didn’t stay to watch an Eminem-deficient D12 perform. So this is really a review of the openers.
First of all, let me bitch about the price. $30 for tix at the door – fuck. Before any of the acts got on stage, a DJ played a nice set of J Dilla classics: “Runnin”, “Raise It Up”, “Let’s Ride”, etc. A lot of nice obscure tracks too, all in all a pretty good DJ set.
Then all hell broke loose. I had spotted these white Coolio looking clown coming into the bar as I came in, wearing a fucking diamond grill.
I NEVER EXPECTED HIM TO GET ON STAGE.
White guys – don’t imitate this look. And don’t pair it with a grill.
With about 4 other white guys, and one person who spent the length of the set wearing a ski mask and leaning against the stage wall. Their set lasted about 20 minutes and it felt like 20 years – every single song was about hustling crack and getting paper. I can’t remember any particularly hilarious lines, but they did repeatedly mention that they can’t work 9 to 5s because they’re on their grind. Or something like that. They brought with them a crowd of depressingly attractive girls who cheered for every word.
Thankfully it did eventually end, and Classified hopped on stage for a short set with some white weed carriers. He did a few tracks people recognized – “Find Out”, “Hard To Be Hip Hop”, and “The Maritimes” were big hits with the crowd. Class was energetic and put on a good show. He also kicked a short, nice freestyle over “Still D.R.E.”.
Next up was Royce, who came on stage with his kid brother Kid Vishis as hypeman. Royce hyped the crowd up a bit, and performed a dope version of “Hip Hop”, then launched into his take on Lil’ Wayne’s “I’m Me”, from The Bar Exam 2. Vishis rapped with Nickel on “Heat To The Streets”, then Royce let Vishis do a freestyle. He wasn’t bad either. Royce finished with 1 verse of “Boom”, I was pretty disappointed when he didn’t do the whole song. Then he was done too.
Next up was Jumpoff Joe Budden, who got the biggest reception of the night. He did a lot of tracks off Mood Muzik 2-3, and performed “Focus” and “Pump It Up”, both of which got people hyped. Budden is an engaging performer, but his material really didn’t translate well in a live setting. The lyrics gf. One fat dude behind me kept pushing me forward and saying, “Go up there, little guy!” He also kept shouting Slaughterhouse which wins him my equivocal respect. I wonder why Royce didn’t come on stage?
Then I was Swayze. I wasn’t sticking around to see a Eminem-less D12, like I said. In summary, mostly pretty good sets, but too damn short. The sound mix was kinda shitty too. I got ripped for my money – if there was a different main act I wouldn’t be so pissed.