Chance The Rapper Teaches London How To Feel Happy - Apple Music Festival Live Review
Chance the Rapper is the future.
Rap and live instrumentation don’t always go hand in hand. A lot of rap artists press play, let their error-free tracks loose, rap along and everyone f**king loves it. Which is fine. But there’s something about live music that takes a gig to another level. Maybe it’s the chance that things could fail. It's exciting. Live instruments are why rock concerts are always more fun than listening to a lot of modern rock albums. (Don’t @ me.)
Chance the Rapper – real name Chancellor Bennett - might agree. He brought along Donnie Trumpet and The Social Experiment, a full band, with whom he released one of last year’s best albums, Surf, to the final night of The Apple Music Festival, in London’s Roundhouse. They took the gig up a level.
Emerging through a platform in the middle of The Roundhouse (see below), Chance launched into ‘Angels’, the lead single from his third solo mixtape, Colouring Book. (We even nominated the ‘Angels’ video for a VMA earlier this year.)
The set leaned heavily on tracks from Acid Rap and Colouring Book, which precisely nobody was complaining about. Putting ‘Cocoa Butter Kisses’ and ‘Favorite Song’ back-to-back was brilliant, with 'All Night' and 'No Problem' receving the best reaction from the crowd as Chance got London dancing.
But that’s not to say that Chance didn’t dip into some of the other tracks he’s helped out on outside of his own discography. He rapped his verse from Action Bronson’s ‘Baby Blue’ (featuring those amazing sort-of-insults): "I hope every soda you drink already shaken up / I hope your dreams dry like raisins in the baking sun.” Chance took a lead role on Kanye West’s (who has described Chance the Rapper as "the future") most recent album, The Life Of Pablo, and he rapped his verse from ‘Ultralight Beams’, one of the album’s best moments, too.
If you ever speak to someone about Chance the Rapper, they’ll always tell you what a genuinely kind, fun person he is. That all comes across in his live performance. In-between songs, Chance doesn’t try to joke around or tell silly stories, instead, he constantly thanks everyone for turning up. It feels genuine, but I’d just like to point this out: Chance, listen, not only do we not pay for your music (Chance, who is still unsigned, gives it all away for free), but this Apple Music Festival gig was free too. We should be thanking you.
Coming back for the encore, Chance played a song so joyous, so brimming with warmth that it was impossible not to smile throughout. (That sounds a little silly, doesn’t it? But it’s true.) ‘Sunday Candy’, a song from the aforementioned Surf, makes you feel incredible. Thank you Chance the Rapper for making beautiful, uplifting music.
All We Got
Pusha Man / Smoke Again
Cocoa Butter Kisses
Baby Blue (Action Bronson cover)
Heaven Only Knows (Towkio cover)
The Way / Church
Ultralight Beam (Kanye West cover)
Mixtape / All Night
Sunday Candy (Donnie Trumpet & The Social Experiment cover)