Although releasing music in the form of mix tapes since 2006, Yelawolf's official debut came as a studio album, Radioactive, which was released late last year on Shady Records. 'Bama drawl mixed with Shady cred equals a force to be reckoned with. Now let's roll...
Girls were snapping photos of themselves in the alley, using the graffiti on the side of St. Andrews as the backdrop. There were bronze babes all dolled up for the occasion; some rocked micro braids fit for Nola, others wore the hell out of leopard print dresses. The majority of the crowd were guys.
Yelawolf paused on the side of the stage, lit up a cigarette, then blasted his lyrics into the hype St. Andrews' crowd. He ran through his songs, including crowd favorites 'Trunk Muzik,' 'Daddy's Lambo,' 'Marijuana,' (which he dedicated to his mother) and 'Pop the Trunk.'
His amplified personality translates well on stage. Yelawolf is a charismatic performer. Even at this point in his career, he is a master of control and theatrics. At times, he is restrained and maintains slight, mime-like movements. He often took the stance of Rodin's 'The Thinker,' positioning himself on the speakers as he unloaded a barrage of volatile rhymes.
Other times, he unleashes a fury from within. Canceling the original Saint Andrews show due to an injury resulting from stage-diving did not stop Yela from diving into the crowd during the middle of this show. Luckily, he came out of it unscathed.
The music has an underlying sound as though it was created while trudging through molasses. Yelawolf adds to it a calculated energy that forces it to ricochet- shattering a stark contrast to the heavy drama incited by the beats.
Yelawolf appears to borrow from a huge catalog of influences- and isn't afraid to rep them. He paid tribute to his musical influences from Jim Morrison to Johnny Cash, and Beastie Boys to Outkast, then brought it back home with Lynyrd Skynyrd.
Somewhere in the crowd was Eminem, who stayed out of the limelight, lurking in the shadows during the show. He didn't interfere with the stage performance; he didn't need to. Yelawolf had the crowd on lock.