Review: 21 Thoughts On Drake Vs. Lil Wayne Tour Stop In New York City
August 21, 2014 - 11:50 am
8. When “0 To 100” ignites the crowd, you start to realize that the loosie track is surpassing “Started From The Bottom” as one of Drake’s most beloved anthems. Mostly because it’s a more versatile flip on the same formula. Zero to 100 could represent the transition from chill to amped, broke to rich, passive to aggressive. Classic one-size-fits-all Drizzy. Definitely one of the concert’s early peak moments.
9. Wayne’s shoutout to Capone and Noreaga in “Believe Me” felt so right in that small Queens stadium, only a 10-minute drive from the duo’s Lefrak stomping grounds. Nevermind the fact some portion of the crowd only knows CNN as a news station.
10. Spotted at the performance venue: Rihanna, J. Cole, Timbaland, Serena Williams, L.A. Reid, NBA ballers Klay Thompson and David Lee, Boi-1da, Omen, Bas. And the newest recipient of a Drake remix: Makonnen. How he didn’t bring dude on stage to perform “Club Goin' Up On A Tuesday” is beyond me. The show took place on a Tuesday, for Drake’s sake!
11. That’s not the only track you’ll wish you’d heard. But there’s just too many hits to fit into an approximately two-hour run time. My wish list: “5 AM In Toronto,” “Successful,” “Miss Me,” “Lord Knows,” “Sh!t” (Drake). And “Tha Block Is Hot,” “Hustler Musik,” “I’m Single,” “Back That Azz Up,” "Where da Cash At" (Lil Wayne).
12. And how did “Hello Brooklyn” not get any play during the battle of the hooks segment, in New York City?
13. But Wayne did pull out “Duffle Bag Boy,” quite possibly the greatest hip-hop hook of the past 10 years.
CONTINUED ON NEXT PAGE
14. It looks like that routine where Drake hovers over the crowd shouting out audience members is here to stay. The singing rapper stands on a small round platform supported by a cable and points out owl shirts and beautiful women from the crowd before singing “Marvin’s Room,” still suspended. Wayne later compares the pole Drake is holding onto to a stripper’s, ha!
15. Drake isn’t the only one crooning on this tour. After “Just Hold On We’re Going Home,” Wayne—now wearing a white T-shirt and red patent leather sneakers—responds with “How To Love,” “Mrs. Officer,” “Every Girl” and “Lollipop.” Drake complains about “all this singing you doing” before pointing out the irony. “I can never say that to anyone,” he chuckles.
16. “Crew Love” is forever a stick of Drake dynamite. “Show Me A Good Time" is a gem, too. Conversely, “Worst Behavior” is already beginning to show some wrinkles.
17. The elephant in the room: Is Drake Vs. Wayne > The Throne? I wouldn’t go that far. Sure the back and forth quips add a comical element, so it’s not as heavy as Jay and Kanye’s tour. And the YMCMB boys also have a deep discography. But the imagery on Kanye and Jay’s show, plus the towering platforms from atop which they rapped, inspired awe. Drake and Wayne is just a plain good time.
18. But if there were one record to hear back-to-back-to-back-to-back, a la “Niggas In Paris,” it’d be “0 To 100.” Or “A Milli,” still.
19. There’s actually a nod to Jay Z’s current tour, On The Run. On a big backing screen, the words THIS IS NOT A REHEARSAL are displayed, bringing to mind the Carters’ use of THIS IS NOT REAL LIFE and THIS IS REAL LIFE captions.
CONTINUED ON NEXT PAGE
20. The Lil Wayne Vs. Drake tour might go down as the formal moment when the baton is passed from Weezy to Drizzy (if you don’t already think that’s the case). The quips and snaps cease by the end of the show, after the final vote is calculated via app and the night’s winner is announced (Drake took this night, easily, tying the tally for the whole tour at five victories each). The OVO leader calls Lil Wayne “the greatest rapper to ever do this shit,” an eyebrow raising-statement in the birthplace of Biggie Smalls, Shawn Carter and Nasir Jones. Wayne returns the favor by thanking Drake for helping to keep him relevant.
21. Ultimately, Drake Vs. Lil Wayne is a fun, high-energy concert. But in the show’s competitive concept lies the one drawback: You wish you get to see the two rap titans performing more of their collaborative hits together, instead of trading songs. “Believe Me” and the night’s closing song, “HYFR (Hell Ya Fucking Right),” are epic moments that leave you craving more. (“Miss Me” needs to be on that set list!) —John Kennedy