Sunday, March 20th
Gas Monkey Live, Dallas, Texas
With the grueling demand of straight back-to-back performances for the past week during the festivities at SXSW, one might expect that any artist would shortly after begin feeling the malaise and fatigue that often trails behind that sort of workload. Such was not the case at all for singer slash, songwriter, producer, director Tory Lanez this Sunday night at Gas Monkey, however. Despite the sleepless nights and plethora of appearances throughout the festival, Lanez still delivered a spectacle of a performance, one comparable to any of his numerous showcases in Austin. Whether it was excess adrenaline milling over from the thrill of the festival, or some special oomph he’d reserved just for his Dallas fans, one would have never guessed he’d just arrived from ATX only twenty minutes prior to taking the stage, never letting on that the 3 hour drive had deterred him, if at all.
Lanez has established a reputation by now for being quite the prodigious performer, and that vocation most certainly precedes him. The Canadian born rapper’s energy could be felt from the crowd’s front to the rear the instant he darted onstage. The last time he graced Dallas was as a precursor for Mac Miller’s tour, but even then he proved more than capable of stealing the reigns and taking the show for himself.
Such was the case Sunday evening during his high-octane set, sporting his valiant ‘New Toronto’ hoody and captivating the audience’s attention seamlessly with hits such as, “LA Confidential” and “Diego.” There wasn’t a silent voice in the entire house when the 23 year-old began crooning the lyrics to, “Say It”, a sensual track named Billboard’s + Emerging Twitter Artist in August 2015, bowed at No. 37 on Mainstream R&B/Hip Hop, and a Billboard’s Hot 100 favorite last month at No. 23. With so much success and clout backing him, there’s really no mystery as to why his live show would be such pandemonium, although it may come as a surprise to one having only heard his radio single for the first time yesterday, seeing as its soft, melodic tone strongly juxtaposes his wild one-man-act. From leaping and bounding from one edge of the stage to the next, haphazardly springing into the crowd, and crowd surfing multiple-yes, MULTIPLE times- Lanez puts on a chaotically compelling display that leaves a lasting impression on everyone in attendance.
What one must admire most about Tory Lanez, is his continued consistency. He’s the same performer during the day that he his at night, on road and off road, and his robust aura is all but infectious each and every time he plays a show. There’s nothing more appealing than an artist who truly and unabashedly enjoys his craft, and that passion is what will certainly propel him to the next frontier of R&B/Rap. His first studio album with Interscope Records and debut is set to release this year. In the mean time, we can expect to see more rambunctious touring, and perhaps another hit single leading up to its release. As one of the most versatile artists of our day, Tory Lanez is a single/rapping/raging conundrum that will surely continue to baffle us for years to come.