By: Youeal Abera, Staff Writer
In a time where hip-hop has officially become the most popular music in America, the genre’s market has become oversaturated with artists who use its culture solely as a means of monetary acquisition. Consequently, hip-hop is now faced with a plethora of artists who create fun, schematic music but lack the propensity to make substantial connections with fans. Bas, or any of the artists on J. Cole’s Dreamville, certainly don’t have this issue.
On Wednesday, January 16, Bas performed at Vancouver’s Fortune Sound Club as a part of his Milky Way Tour. With a comprehensive setlist that was comprised of songs from his latest album Milky Way, in addition to his past projects, Bas was able to perform an electrifying show that had fans wildin’ out from start to finish. There were a number of song selections that had the audience galvanized. One song in particular, Front Desk, had fans screaming and cheering the second they heard the familiar piano notes. As I looked around, I saw young women and young men with infectious smiles shouting, “Oh you headed out of town with your best friend!” Another song that ignited Fortune Sound Club was “Too High To Riot,” the title track from Bas’ second studio album. More than the audience’s enthused reaction to the song, the most noteworthy aspect of this specific performance was Bas explaining how he had been inspired to write track by the complaints and calls to the police that racist neighbours made against him and his friends as they moved into an affluent California neighborhood. Artists explaining the incentives behind the art they’ve created is remarkably refreshing, particularly in an era where many artists aren’t as heavily involved in the creation of their content.
Moreover, one of the biggest episodes of uproar experienced on this night was when Bas performed the Cole-assisted track, “Tribe.” The most euphoric (and humorous) moment of the show was captured as I perceived four grown men with arms around their shoulders, swaying back and forth as J.Cole’s voice sang, “Lalalalala” over the speakers. As evidenced by the concord across the audience, Tribe was an excellent choice to close the show.
Whether it was Bas’ amazing connection with his collective fan-group, the intimate performance-setting provided by Fortune Sound Club’s small size, or both of these factors, the entire duration of Bas’ show felt like a uniting experience. Perhaps accentuated by the contrasting, chaotic political state our society is currently placed in, Bas provided concert-goers with a space of joy and serenity, one which prompted everyone present (Bas, his DJ, club staff, and audience members) to dance and rap in a unilateral motion. Out of the many concerts I have attended, this particular element made Bas’ show stand out.
Tickets are still available for Bas’ Milky Way Tour on http://dreamville.com/milkywaytour/. His latest album, Milky Way, is available in stores and on all streaming platforms.