Review: Lil Uzi Vert | Melbourne | 22.2.18

Friday, February 23, 2018
(Photo - Kristy Smolcic)

Lil Uzi Vert's first visit to Australia has been highly anticipated for a while now. His first big moment was the release of his second mixtape Luv Is Rage in 2015. 2017, however, saw him break away from underground hip-hop popularity and capture the world's attention on the main charts — in part thanks to his hit 'XO TOUR Llif3', which exploded on the charts. After spending the last few years eagerly waiting for him to come to Australia, fans were finally treated to an explosive and memorable performance by the artist from Philadelphia, even if it felt like the night ran short.

Though he has only been around for five years, he has released an array of projects, which he gave a preview into during the night. As mentioned earlier, it was his Luv Is Rage tape that originally caught the attention of hip-hop fans. From the tape, he performed 'Top', 'Super Saiyan' as well as '7AM'. Along with his older favourites, he squeezed in some of his more notable features, including his verses from 'Bad & Boujee', Carnage's 'WDYW' and Playboi Carti's 'Wokeuplikethis*'. 

During the course of the night, Uzi was bursting with energy. If you've seen videos of his live performances, then it's to be expected. Uzi truly gives his everything in a live setting and it's an environment he thrives in. The rockstar aesthetic is an influential part of his music, and his live performances are reflective of this. Throughout his entire set, he would let his backing track play in the background so he could dance and do his shoulder roll. He's not one to give the crowd on-stage banter, but it was obvious that he get's an incredible amount of joy from being on-stage. Whilst in-song, he would run back and forth between the ends of the small stage, and he had already stage-dived by the time he had finished his opening three songs. 

He performed 'XO TOUR Llif3' towards the end of his set, which caused a roar of excitement. He then returned to the track once again a few songs later. This time throwing the mic into the crowd and letting the audience sing it instead. This, however, left him mic-less for a little while when it came time to move onto the next track, where he disguised it by dancing for the crowd. 

Before leaving the stage, he grabbed someone's phone and filmed a little special video of him before giving it back to them. I did feel a little nervous for the person when he grabbed their phone, as last year he had a few incidents where he was throwing phones off the stage into the moshpit. Thankfully, it was returned to its rightful owner safely. His departure from the stage felt slightly awkward as there was no farewell speech, he just left leaving people confused on whether it was the end of the show. Admitingly, I wouldn't expect anything else from Uzi.   

Lil Uzi Vert's Melbourne's show provided a slice into his eccentric, yet intriguing, world. Despite the lack of structure in the show, his performance was an insight into his legend and the reason why he has developed a cult-like following over the past few years. 

Written by Amy Smolcic (@amysmolcic
Photos by Kristy Smolcic