Denzel Curry Concert Review

Denzel Curry
November 20th, 2016
The Granada - Lawrence, KS

Denzel Curry
South Florida rapper Denzel Curry returned to The Granada on Sunday night for a staggeringly energetic headlining set. His last show at The Granada in 2014 drew only 50 people -- one of which he recognized in the crowd at this show.

Since 2014, Curry has released two new albums and amassed a large enough fan base to pack a great portion of the theater on Sunday. Despite creating hip-hop music in a dark and menacing style, Curry kept things light for a majority of his set. The rapper employed a variety of moves (martial arts and dance) while spitting his cloud rap bangers with a machine gun flow.

Boogie
Curry has a new album on the way, but no official singles have been released yet. This allowed for the focus of the show to be on tracks from his three full length albums. The most recent of the three is this year's "Imperial." The album is a more polished release than the two before it, but still captures Curry's rebellious spirit in a similar fashion. "ULT" saw Curry hopping across the stage singing the song's cleverly melodic hook and shouting, "Y'all n****s ain't U-L-T." "Knotty Head" signaled the time for Curry to let his locks swing unrestrained as he rapped about his upbringing on the Rick Ross-bolstered track.

"Zone 3" and "Threatz" -- thunderous cuts from Curry's breakout debut "Nostalgic 64" -- allowed for  fans that hadn't seen Curry before -- most of the room -- to go mosh and stage dive to his throwback cuts. The night's climax came in the form of Curry's viral hit "Ultimate." A highlight of Curry's 2015 album "32 Zel / Planet Shrooms," the song features Curry at his most venomous, spewing line after nonstop line of boastful, narcissistic "awesomeness" before declaring himself "K to the I to the N to the G."

After over an hour trap-infused party rap power, it was clear that Curry and the rest of the Black Metal Terrorist tour had cemented a spot in the long line of infamously rowdy Granada rap shows.

Yoshi Thompkins
Joining Curry on the tour was Compton rapper Boogie. Boogie's evolved g-funk stylings, impressive lyricism, and warm stage presence made for a smooth transition between acts. A small handful of more aggressive songs like his latest single "Oh My," however, did allow the college crowd to return to partying momentarily. Fans of YG and The Game should already know about Boogie.

Also on tour with Curry was Yoshi Thompkins. A fellow Floridian and member of Curry's C9 collective, Thompkins offered an explosive set. Only one song in, Thompkins climbed onto and leapt from a PA speaker on stage. The crowd immediately latched onto Thompkins' abrasive, carefree energy and was happy to engage in a wall of death after Thompkins split them down the center with a giant staff. Many of Thompkins' songs came off as similar to Curry's -- although a bit more melodic -- but that's to be expected when working closely with another artist for several years. Thompkins' set left the young crowd primed and rearing to go for the rest of the night.

The local support for the show was handled by Kansas City rapper Barrel Maker and Lawrence producer LION. Known collectively as Lionmaker, the duo let loose several new tracks after several months of not performing together. While Maker's attempt at a sung hook on one song didn't bode all too well, the set was still largely dynamic. Due to LION's electronic background, Maker's music with him is a bit murkier than his efforts with BLKFLANL -- a set that may not have gone over quite as well at a Denzel Curry show. Before their final song, Maker spoke about how his six year-old nephew asked him if he would be hung after Donald Trump was elected president. Maker begged of the audience to be accepting of every race and religion and look out for each other. Even on evenings of art and celebration, America's current climate has continued to loom heavy over musicians' heads.


Full photo gallery: https://www.flickr.com/photos/118613296@N06/albums/72157676891935125

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