On Monday (April 27th), Birmingham’s o2 Academy played host to yet another exciting event put on by one of the fastest growing live events companies around, Musicalize. This year alone they have been responsible for hosting Nelly, Trey Songz and Snoop Dogg, and also announced a 50 Cent and G-Unit date in London this July, but this time it was the turn of Cali native, Tyga.
After the release of Tyga’s collaboration album with Chris Brown, Fan of A Fan: The Album, filled with hits of course, Tyga was back at it, touring with his fellow superstar in North America earlier this year before heading over to Europe. As soon as this date was announced there was buzz and anticipation around it, and shortly after, it was even more exciting to hear that the Ayo hit-maker was to be supported by 3 of the UK’s finest talents.
First up, was Birmingham’s very own, Lady Leshurr, who, although had a relatively short set, did not fail to get her home crowd hyped with her raw lyrical ability, just before passing the stage onto the next act. Whilst waiting, DJ Smooth Fuego managed to hijack the speakers and keep the crowd entertained, just before the fast rising South London rapper Fekky emerged. Taking the scene by storm, we did manage to see Fekky toward the end of last year when supporting another Cali rapper, Kid Ink. He opened with his Still Sittin’ Here, the track with Dizzee that really defined his place in the scene. Despite Fekky’s usual antics, his three cameramen on stage during his performance, and giving four lucky fans their money back after pulling a wad of 20s from his jacket, the packed crowd still seemed even more energetic when the final support act arrived.
His vocals contradicted his composed entrance onto the stage, screaming “Give me more, give me more, 8 bars, 16 or 24”, Chip had a big smile on his face, as though he’s happy to be back and has come with bars, (as he made clear during his Fire In The Booth ‘schooling’ for Tinie). However, despite this his focus was clear, you could see it as he entered each verse, from the defiant Don’t Waste My Time which he spat A cappella before bringing in the beat, to an explosive exclusive from a track by himself, Wretch 32 and Kano, of which we were informed the video will be out soon.
None of this however, took away from the man of the hour, Tyga, who walked onto the stage in front of the, animal-type, visuals behind, to the infamous Make It Work, looking cool as ever, and wearing a baggy long-sleeve jersey, hiding his tattooed arms, I wonder why… Nevertheless, he got the crowd jumping by going straight into the bass heavy Dope, followed by an electrifying Versace verse, before urging his fans to Throw It Up.
Following the oh so common ‘take it back’ stage of the show, not something all may be familiar with for the former YMCMB superstar known for his current club masterpiece with Chris Brown, Tyga continued with the bangers, from Make It Nasty to Loyal to Molly, before perhaps paying homage to his YMCMB career with the Bedrock verse. After getting the crowd ‘turnt’ with hit after hit non-stop, in fact, the minimal interaction from the main act was rather disappointing, but it’s easy to forget how many big tracks one has in their catalogue, the first three deep notes of Rack City dropped, which really got them going, before ending on Ayo of course. With the (ridiculous) video playing in the back as the 25-year-old rapper stood and listened to the crowds’ “ayo” roars from the balcony to the bar and back, before thanking everyone and disappearing onto the next one.