Having seen Alabama’s Yelawolf at last year’s Soundset, it was always going to be an exciting evening when the self-confessed Redneck hit the Capital for the very first time. Right from the off the MC was in great spirits with high energy emanating from both the rapper and the crowd as he launched into his set.
The crowd was one of the best I’ve witnessed at a hip hop show in a long, long time and considering this was his debut in the UK, it made it all the more impressive. The sound at XOYO continues to impress and bass-heavy tracks like I Wish and Daddy’s Lambo sounded gargantuan as he ripped his double-time raps with no effort at all.
Running through tracks from the original Trunk Muzik like the brilliant Mixin’ Up The Medicine, Good To Go and aforementioned I Wish, including the “I ‘preciated it Rae’ to the unfortunately absent Wu Tang member and tunes from the updated 0-60 version of the mixtape like Billy Crystal and drink anthem I Just Wanna Party, Yelawolf was a non-stop machine, ramping the energy levels up at every turn and demanding that everyone throw their hands up as he rocked out on stage.
Even the slower songs Box Chevy and Love Is Not Enough didn’t dent the crowd’s hype allowing Yela to showcase his versatility on stage. But it was the final two songs, Pop The Trunk and In This Club, which showed him to be the huge talent he is. The shirtless, tattooed, mulleted guy from Gadsden, Alabama isn’t just a flash in the pan, nor should he be given “the new Eminem” tag that will no doubt lazily be thrown his way. He’s simply the real deal. Don’t sleep.