Yelawolf at the Bluebird, 10/16/12

Categories: Concert Reviews

Antonio Valenzuela
Yelawolf last night at the Bluebird Theater.


"If you're over 21, make some noise!.... And if you're under 21 but you're still getting fucked up, MAKE SOME NOIIIIIIISE!" implored one Mr. Michael Wayne Atha, otherwise known as Yelawolf, the hip-hop pied piper of a younger, mostly male crowd, who would later, at the rapper's prompting, proudly and defiantly shout "We don't give a fuck!" Yelawolf's overarching message to us all -- if there indeed was one -- seemed to be that we need to work hard and stop caring what others think. Oh, and get laid. Sound advice. By the time the third song began, the capacity crowd was all but converted to whatever religion he was pushing.

See Also:
- Review: Yelawolf at the Bluebird, 10/4/11
- Yelawolf: A Day in the Life on Warped Tour

Antonio Valenzuela
DJ Vajra last night at the Bluebird Theater with Yelawolf.

The show began late by Bluebird standards, with Yelawolf and Boulder native DJ Vajra taking the stage at 10 p.m. Rittz, a refrigerator-sized rapper whose girth and long, frizzy red hair nearly upstaged his impeccable flow, had just finished his set (his underground hit "White Jesus" was a big pleaser).

Antonio Valenzuela
Rittz last night at the Bluebird Theater.

Yelawolf appeared, bouncing across the stage like he'd just chugged a case of Monster energy drinks (which, by the way, was a show sponsor). "Whistle Dixie" and the better-known "Trunk Muzik" led off the set, showcasing the man's extremely well-honed style, fast, staccato flow that verged on rushing the beat, backdropped by tracks that were melodic and nuanced. The juxtaposition of the two was a little surprising -- you might expect someone with nihilistic lyrics about doing meth and peeing in lakes to have similarly raw, straightforward beats. You'd be wrong with that assumption.

Antonio Valenzuela
Yelawolf last night at the Bluebird Theater.

Yelawolf, an Alabama-born rapper who plays up his former drug-dealing, trailer park-living heritage, is a tattooed wonder of boundless enthusiasm. During "Let Me Out," he jumped on top of a four-foot tall amp on wheels. And no fewer than two dozen times did he order everybody to put their motherfucking hands in the air. But while this limitless show energy is one of his greatest assets, it can also prove to be a drawback. After all, how long can a crowd stay in such a lather? The set last night was sorely in need of some dynamics; the excitement needed to ebb and flow. It was like a perpetual orgasm machine: While in theory it may sound great, in practice it gets exhausting.

Antonio Valenzuela
Yelawolf last night at the Bluebird Theater.

Yelawolf is a fan of mixing up songs, even if not their delivery. Sampling AC/DC's "Back in Black," Lynyrd Skynyrd's "Sweet Home Alabama" and Nirvana's "Smells Like Teen Spirit" (in the span of a single track, no less), the former Mr. Atha invoked the spirit of Kid Rock. Both share an affinity for white trashiness and underdoggery, and both apparently have an unabashed love for Skynyrd.

Location Info


Bluebird Theater

3317 E. Colfax Ave., Denver, CO

Category: Music

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