G-Eazy “When It’s Dark Out” Concert Review

On January 15, Grand Boulevard embodied the spirit of St. Louis nightlife as thousands of fans trekked their way to the Fox Theatre to see Gerald Earl Gillum, or as most know him, G-Eazy, on the night of his ninth consecutive sold-out show.

A crowd consisting largely of young adults packed the sidewalk and foyer of the elegant theater just minutes before the show began, their attire seemingly contrasting with the graceful sophistication the Fox is reputed to possess. An usher escorted us through the masses and to our seats which were tucked comfortably beneath the balcony, facing the vastness of the grand theater.

At this time, the first of the opening acts, Nef the Pharaoh, had begun his set. The stage was adorned with a simple white screen, which would later be utilized to display video clips during the other performances. Uniquely, Nef the Pharaoh’s set consisted of thirty second bits of songs, each divided by short bursts of an air horn. Although the music blared and the lights danced an array of colors, the crowd showed little interest in his performance, idly swaying to the beat of the short-lived music. After thirty minutes, the next act made his appearance. Marc E Bassy emerged after an enticing display of lights, and intrigued the crowd with his powerful voice. Although the audience responded slightly more positively to his performance, it seemed as if very few individuals were familiar with his music, and his set was not effective in energizing the crowd. The final opening act, A$AP Ferg, took the stage thirty minutes after Marc E Bassy. A more renowned artist, A$AP Ferg was able to lure the crowd into enjoyment with his most popular hits.

The opening act, however, began to stretch much longer than anticipated as the performers attested to some “technical difficulties” and desperately searched for additional songs to perform amongst themselves. It had been two hours after the show began, and its main act was nowhere in sight. Eventually, the opening act ceased and intermission began. Rather than becoming agitated, the audience stayed positive, cheering on a man who entertained the theater with his unique dance moves from the balcony. After a few minutes of socializing, the audience returned to their seats.

After what seemed like eternity, the lights shut off, and a massive roar spread across the crowd. The introduction of G-Eazy’s new album, “When it’s Dark Out”  began to play, and dim red lights revealed the newly decorated stage, featuring a raunchy city setting, and a tall man in a leather jacket. The crowd was exuberant, and for the first time that night, it began to embody the energy of the music, despite the long delay. The show was relatively consistent with the album, playing nearly every song with the addition of some older beats as well.

Abundant emotion was poured into G-Eazy’s performance, revealing his journey from humble beginnings in the Bay Area as Gerald, to worldwide tours as G-Eazy. He kept his crowd closely involved, taking pictures with them, allowing them to finish his songs, and encouraging them to wave their hands to the beat of the music.

The vibrant atmosphere of the theater did not cease throughout the show, and I often found myself hoping each song would not be the last. After a few surprise performances from other artists, G-Eazy exited the stage, only to be lured back by the crowd, who eagerly demanded an encore. G-Eazy laughed a reluctant “I suppose” from back stage, then returned to play one of his most popular songs, “I Mean It”.

After the show, I, along with the rest of the crowd, poured out of the doors of The Fox, and into the frigid night air. Despite my throbbing feet, tired arms, and sore throat, the night was truly memorable experience that any fan of rap would appreciate tremendously.