For the second time in less than a year, Ottawa hosted the wild-child of the new Toronto– Tory Lanez– for another sold out show. Fresh off his debut solo album I Told You, released just under 4 months ago, the rapper-slash-singer has been making waves across the world. The album itself is a detailed story of his uprising told through a track-list of 14 songs and 14 skits. After an overwhelming positive response, Tory took his album on the road along with Kranium and Jacquees.
Ottawa’s Bronson Centre was the second-last stop on the 8-city Canadian leg of the I Told You tour; After Montreal, the tour will moving on to another 38 dates across the United States and Europe. People scrambling to find tickets an hour before the show and a packed line around the entire venue was visual proof of Tory’s non-stop grind to make his career pop off. Hanging over balconies and standing on theatre seats, a rowdy mixture of fans settled in for what they knew would be a crazy show.
Photo by: Chizzle Photography
Straight out of Montego Bay to Miami, Kranium was the first artist of the night to hit the Bronson theatre stage. Known widely for his track “Nobody Has to Know” with Ty Dolla $ign, he set the night’s tone with his smooth dancehall influence. Void of bells, whistles, and crazy antics, Kranium still got the crowd moving on vocals alone. Getting the crowd involved, he brought one lady up to the stage for a one-on-one whine down. His set was short, but Kranium was the perfect beginning to the night for all of the females in the audience.
Even after a short twitter beef with Tory Lanez, Jacquees still managed to land a spot on the Toronto rapper’s tour. Coming out strong with the dance moves that continued through his entire set, it was evident that the ATL R&B singer was there to entertain most of all. Talented as he may be, it was difficult to stray away from thoughts of Lil Wayne comparisons of the Cash Money signee (is it a prerequisite to grow dreads and wear red if you’re Cash Money?) Regardless, the guy has pipes. Aside from his popular tracks “Come Thru” and “B.E.D” (an obvious rendition of Avant’s “Read Your Mind), we weren’t too familiar with a lot of his catalog– but the fans on the floor sure were. Coming out right before Tory Lanez, Jacquees did an impressive job of hyping the crowd up and getting shit started.
Starting show with the “I Told You/Another One” skitserved as the opening credits for the Tory Lanez story– a movie fans were dying to watch. Tory was no holds barred as he ran out onto the stage to a verse from “New Toronto” from his “The New Toronto” mixtape released last year. After a couple of tracks, everyone was anticipating the moment Fargo was going to launch himself into the audience and make his stage obsolete. It didn’t take long before his DJ was left solo on higher ground and Tory was down in the trenches with his fans; It’s become known that if you’re on the floor during one of his shows, you’re going to be doing some work for your performance. It’s intriguing to see how much energy this guy has to do an entire acrobatics performance and an hour-long concert. One thing is clear: crowd interaction is definitely Tory’s thing even when he’s not climbing all over them. He often put the breaks on his performance just to talk with his fans about life, have an R. Kelly jam session, and invite them all out to party with him.
From “Cold Hard Love” to “Traphouse”, the set list was an even mix of pre-debut and debut album stuff, including his jump off track “Say It” which landed him a coveted spot in mainstream music. Veering slightly off the album/mixtape stuff, Tory went into his version (known as the better version) of the popular summer anthem “Controlla” originally by Drake. The night edged toward the end with Tory pulling off his shirt (for aerodynamic purposes, we assume) and flinging himself further into the crowd to his Meek Mill collab “Litty”. As he went into his trusted “Diego” finale, he tried to make his way onto the balcony but was just out of reach of the hands that tried to hoist him up (someone get this man a ladder!). He ended his set with a simple peace sign, “thank you”, and dipped the stage to his after party at PPL Nightclub.
Photos by: Chizzle Photography
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