Mac Miller At The Hollywood Palladium
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Mac Miller shook a sold out crowd at Hollywood's Palladium last night, where everyone seemed to have forgotten it was a Wednesday night, bringing high energy and excitement to support the young Pittsburgh rapper. Openers Vince Staples, The Internet, Chance The Rapper and Action Bronson got the crowd warmed up for Miller, putting the fans on edge up to the moment he walked onto the stage at 10:10PM.
Miller seamlessly combined hits like the show’s opening track "Loud" from his mixtape “Macadelic,” to "Smile Back" off his debut album "Blue Slide Park," to songs from his newly released (and second) studio album “Watching Movies With The Sound Off,” and a little of everything in between. His lyrical wit and ability to perform intricately recorded material live is impressive, but it's his interaction and connection with his fans that is most notable.
Rappers are associated with their flow, but it’s not just the flow of words you should consider. Miller's stage presence is like a river flowing into the sea, and last night's crowd swayed with a consistent rise and fall, the surface ruffled with arms like a rippling effect synced to his tempo. While no one was surfing the crowd, it's worth mentioning the platform was there. It's also indicative of Miller's career as an independent artist and top ranking performer. His flow permeates outwards to the girl in the skinny jeans and oversized hoodie, or the guy in the snapback and tattooed sleeves - and back inward to Miller, fueling the rhythm of the night. A Mac Miller performance is an incredible give and take to watch.
Highlights included Tyler, the Creator's on-stage cameo for "O.K.," Miller's musicality shining through during "Best Day Ever" when he picked up a guitar that he played for a few songs, and of course when the whole building almost caved in from the crowd chaos of "Frick Park Market." One could argue that Miller’s “The Space Migration Tour” was all over the place, but in the best way possible. Guest appearances, live instrumentation, crowd frenzy, and fog machines brought an abundance of energy and action to the room, and a night that—chaotic as it was—really represented Mac Miller the man and the artist.
"I like being the guy without an identity. I like being the guy everyone thought was this, but was really that," Mac told me backstage. "But it's all genuine and authentic and no one that knows me has ever questioned when I'm performing "Lucky Ass Bitch" that that's not real, and when I'm doing "Youforia" that that's not real." And laughing behind a smirk added, "I'm just a complex individual for the different motions."
So what's next?
"That's a great question that I've asked myself, and have been trying to figure out, but you know what? The thing that I'm thankful for about this album, is that it's an album that gives me some time to breathe."
Something tells me that at 19 years old with two studio albums, three EPs, over seven mixtapes, five tours, a reality show, endless producer credits and collaborations, and starting his own record label - even though taking some time off is warranted, we both know it's not in his nature to catch his breath.
1. Loud 2. Smile Back 3. Lucky Ass Bitch 4. Goosebumpz 5. Red Dot Music 6. Avian 7. Gees 8. O.K. (Feat. Tyler, The Creator) 9. Nikes On My Feet 10. Of the Soul 11. S.D.S. (with The Internet) (Space Migration Sessions Version) 12. Kool Aid & Frozen Pizza 13. Best Day Ever 14. The Star Room (with The Internet) (Space Migration Sessions Version) 15. I Am Who Am (Killin' Time) 16. Bird Call 17. Watching Movies 18. Remember 19. The Question 20. Objects in the Mirror (with Tay Walker)
Encore: 21. Youforia 22. Frick Park Market 23. Onaroll (Pink Slime) 24. Donald Trump