BY: ROXY CARR
One of rap’s newer prodigies, Tyler, the Creator, performed a sold-out concert at the AmericanAirlines Arena on Sept. 29. Tyler Okonma, the rapper’s real name, performed his fifth studio album “Igor” on tour. The 40-minute project was released earlier this summer and quickly climbed the charts.
The concert began with opening performances by artists Goldlink and Jaden. Goldlink attempted to hype up the crowdwith his most popular song, “Crew.” The song was performed with tons of energy, and Goldlink jumped around the stage and prompted those in the pit to start jumping around. His set lasted for about 20 minutes until Jaden took the stage with hits from his latest album “ERYS.” He performed to thousands of screaming fans in front of a huge screen that broadcasted a pink sunset. At one point, Jaden left the stage and performed in the stands on the left of the stage, causing those in that row to go wild.
Finally, Okonma took to the stage wearing a platinum white wig and bright blue suit. For his first song, “Igor’s Theme,” he stood idle in the middle of the stage, the spotlight shining on him. Every time he would bring the mic to his mouth and utter a lyric, his fans screamed and cheered. Next, Okonma played the song “I Think,” and danced around the stage energetically.When it became time to play the song “Earfquake,” a curtain behind Okonma lifted to reveal a grand piano. He proceeded to play an instrumental version of the song, without singing. Instead, the audience united and sang the lyrics in tune with his playing. The vibes of the stadium radiated happiness and positivity.
Okonma continued playing music from “Igor,” cracking jokes in between songs and engaging with the audience. Midway through, Okonma asked the audience how they felt about his previous albums; they responded with excited applause. Following their cue, Okonma played the song “911” from his album “Flowerboy,” which was released in 2017. Going even further back, Okonma played the songs “She” and “Yonkers” from his first album “Goblin,” which was released in 2011. This album was his claim to fame; the album’s questionable lyrics and creepy music video., that depicted Okonma eating a cockroach brought him attention.
Over the years, Okonma’s music has changed dramatically. In the beginning, his lyrics were violent with themes regarding loneliness, hatred and sadness. In recent years, as his relevance increased, Okonma’s music became more positive and easier to listen to, like “Igor,” which is an album that discusses love, moving on and friendship. When Okonma played his older music at the concert, it was obvious to see that his production has changed dramatically. His newest album uses upbeat, faster synth while his older music is slower and recorded at a lower pitch. This highlights how far he has come as a musical artist. To close the show, Okonma performed the last song from the “Igor” album, titled “Are We Still Friends?,” on a platform that raised up and down; which was interesting because I had never seen anything like it before. Overall, attending the tour was an enjoyable experience. The elements of colored lighting, smoke, fire and stage setup, all tied together perfectly. Those in the audience were singing, dancing, moshing and jumping to his music. Tyler, the Creator’s passionate dance moves and interaction with the crowd made the concert extra special.