In 2012, I went to a little known music festival called Coachella. It’s in California. I saw a couple up-and-coming bands called Radiohead and Black Keys. It was quite lit. The last act of the festival was two artists turned entrepreneurs named Dr. Dre and Snoop Dogg. Tupac even showed up in hologram form.
Now, this isn’t a humblebrag saying that I did it. I did, but that’s not the point. The point is that this show has always stood out to me as a show that had only hits, no filler. Every single song was a hit. Dre and Snoop would seamlessly flow from hits like “Gin and Juice” to “The Next Episode” and then into Still D.R.E. . The Rae Sremmurd concert at The Granada on November 22, 2016 was a lot like that show.
The anticipation for the hype-rap party starting duo from Atlanta was at an all-time high at the venue. The line was wrapped around the building with students and kids high school age and up. Once you enter the venue, it’s like there was a solid mass of people eagerly awaiting something incredible. Once a DJ started spinning DJ Khaled hits, the crowd started yelling every word. Like any college town rap show, all the pre-rap show staples were there (“Antidote,” “Woke Up in a New Bugati”, etc.)
We stood through 3 Sremm Life associates, Bobo Swae, Impxct, and a DMX lookalike named EEARZ, who has a mixtape titled “EEARZ to the Streets” which is an example of phenomenal wordplay and made me laugh audibly through his act. Finally, it was ready to get really rowdy.
Rae Sremmurd walked out in front of a giant, 200” LED screen flashing colors as they erupted into “Start a Party.” I’ve wanted to hear this song live since I heard it on that Sremm Life II, and I imagined every time I listened to it that I’d be partaking in a riot when I heard it live. The song absolutely did not disappoint. As soon as the bass kicked in, it was like a hurricane just ripped the roof off the place. It was sheer chaos. Hands were flying, water whipped through the air, and the bass was so loud that the air vibrated.
From the start of the show, there was no stopping the hit train. They leaped into a raucous version of “No Type,” “Throw Sum More,” and “Come Get Her.” Each song, the faces of the crowd illuminated nothing but uncut joy. I’m 100% confident that it’s impossible to be upset at a Rae Sremmurd concert. Between the unbelievable songs, performed with such enthusiasm, and the dynamic duo of Swae Lee and Slim Jimmy, there is just so much hype to be caught up in your feelings.
The chemistry between the two brothers is something that needs to be noted too. The last thing President Obama does before handing the reigns over to Mr. Brexit Donald Trump is officially name Swae Lee and Slim Jimmy national treasures and throw their faces onto Mount Rushmore. These dudes are just the greatest thing to happen to music since Wolfgang Amadeus Mozart played the harpsichord with his ass. Their enthusiasm and love for what they’re doing is so pure, I wish I could pour it on my pancakes, it’s so sweet. When they weren’t rapping, they were bouncing around the stage or taking selfies with fans’ phones throughout the entire show.
After performing a plethora of hits, including every banger you’d expect to hear from them like “Look Alive,” “No Flex Zone,” and “Unlock the Swag,” it seemed like the guys were absolutely gassed, and rightfully so. They fully threw every molecule of themselves into this performance.
I can safely say that this is the best rap show of the year for me. It’s not all hype like the Saint Pablo show, it’s just pure unadulterated FUN. Imagine the best night at a club you’ve ever had, then imagine the dudes who provided all the hits you were turning up to were suddenly onstage performing them live, dressed in pink mink coats. It’s like a wild dopamine rush to the dome.
The truth is, we don’t deserve Rae Sremmurd. As a nation and as a community of people, we are lucky to have these two churning out bangers on a yearly basis for us to turn up to and shake our bums to. As Thanksgiving time is here, we should all be thankful for the two most effortlessly fun guys in music. Also, word to the wise, if your family is arguing at the dinner table on Turkey Day, just put on some Sremm Life and drown it all out with some good vibes.