Honestly, what else is left to say about Kendrick Lamar at this point?! He proves time and time again that he is the greatest rapper alive at every festival, concert, award show...and his headlining set at Voodoo Music Festival 2017 was no different.
The epic performance performance began with a classic Kung Fu movie skit, which went along with Lamar's Kung Fu Kenny alter-ego as he showed off his quite impressive "turtle style" moves against his opponent. After a shocking pyrotechnic explosion on stage, the rapper quickly stomped into DAMN. highlight "DNA" with such fervor that would make every one of his rap competitors nervous. I noticed the song, along with a few other tracks from DAMN., were given a hard rock edge as electric guitar riffs were elevated high over the thumping hip-hop percussions.
Kendrick's songs are almost always better when performed live. They hold way more musical weight as the rapper drives the intensity with his manic twitches, focused stares into your soul and intriguing variations of rap flows and voices. What made the performance even more interesting were the colors on stage. At many points, the audience glowed in either a shade of icy-cool blue or a fiery red—two tones that reflect the different facets of Kendrick's personality.
His confidence grew throughout the performance in such an attractive way, as he mixed in modern classics like "Money Trees," "Swimming Pools (Drank)," "Backseat Freestyle" and "Alright" with newer tunes like "Levitate," "Element," "Loyalty" (he adorably rapped Rihanna's part), "Humble," the "Mask Off" remix and the crooning "Love." "Is anybody alive out there?" Kendrick repeatedly asked the crowd throughout his set. But after an unforgettable performance like that, a question like that seems frivolous.
Stay tuned to all of Fuse's on-the-ground coverage from Voodoo Music Experience 2017 all weekend right here! Next up, go back in time and watch an old-school Fuse x Kendrick interview: