Did Jay-Z & Kanye West’S ‘Watch The Throne’ Uk Tour Live Up To Expectations?
Over the past week, the most popular talking point by far was the long-awaited arrival of the 'Watch The Throne' tour in London. Not only were hip-hop fans raving about the show, but the event has also been positively reported by the tabloids and pop publications, demonstrating the phenomenal growth of urban music in the mainstream world...
The concepts for the show were clear: minimalism, sharp visuals and pure quality, which was key to what Jay-Z called this "glorious occasion." In an unusual move for an arena show, Jay-Z and Kanye West decided not to feature any supporting acts, an unspoken statement to their top-class status. Clad in all-black everything, the moguls put on a spectacle that many described as "the best show they had ever seen." The show was primarily a showcase of the 'Watch The Throne' LP, however it could have also been classed as a 'Greatest Hits' tour, as Jay and ‘Ye both performed their own sets – which essentially made it fail-proof.
Another large reason why the show was largely successful was because the hip-hop stars not only showcased their strong vocal skills, but they also showcased their strong personalities. Jigga kicked the solo sessions off with 'Where I’m From' and 'Jigga What, Jigga Who'. A professional performer, the 42-year-old put on a polished, controlled performance, with his reserved energy giving him the superiority of a big brother to Kanye. On the other hand, Kanye was snarling, screeching and rapping on his knees at points of the show, giving us a raw performance that you could feel across the dome.
The Chi-town rapper also revealed his famous inner-diva during one of his performances, cutting a track off and reloading it because he wasn’t happy with the camera man’s angles, before saying: "I know what I’m doing. Sorry, London. I want you to have the best show." It was clear to see that the pair had a large input in the stage set up and the powerful visuals. As the pair performed 'Welcome To The Jungle', we saw wild animals attacking their prey on the big screen, an obvious reference to the one thing that was made clear at this occasion – they are the kings of the rap jungle.
As well as performing 21st century hip-hop classics, Kanye West made the ladies and the pop fans happy with a quick set from his '808’s and Heartbreak' album, which saw him perform 'Heartless' and 'Runaway'. It ended with the 34-year-old making the crowd laugh by singing: "If I told you I don't like the way your hair looks tonight, don't listen to me, baby. I'm an a**hole." As the tracklist was top class, it would have always been a worthwhile concert. But what made it epic was their ability to project their charisma to 20,000 people at once at an almost tangible level.
The rappers successfully gave us a clear insight into their world, letting us feel their potent power and their strong connection to not only each other, but their audience – who were 100% engaged in the moment. As the concert ended, Yeezy said: "If this was your first concert, it is all downhill from here." For once, I would have to agree that this isn’t his ego talking, it’s the truth.
Words: Maz Khan (@MazHalima)