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Wednesday, 01 May 2013 12:36

Concert review: Danny Brown (with Kitty and DJ Skywlkr) gets the Old Rock House jumping, Monday, April 29

Concert review: Danny Brown (with Kitty and DJ Skywlkr) gets the Old Rock House jumping, Monday, April 29
Written by Tyler Williamson

Unexpectedly prompt to the stage, with signature hate-it-or-love-it bedhead hair and eyes wide shut, Danny Brown transformed the Old Rock House into pure bedlam.

Kitty opened for the Detroit MC. An odd pairing in every sense -- the two only share a manager -- Kitty comes from Daytona Beach and has connected more through blogging than lyrics. With subject matter cribbed from teenaged diaries across the world -- "Call me sober when you're ready, not going steady but babe I planned our wedding already" -- the female emcee had no takers in the crowd. Saying it herself -- "I'm sorry you guys, I only have one song left!" - the former Claire's employee literally apologized towards the end of her set. Despite a raucous response to "Orion's Belt" -- or at least the mention of the track's cohort, Riff Raff -- she walked offstage admitting how angry Danny would be with her set.

The crowd couldn't have cared less. They were there for Danny.

Brown's tour DJ, Skywlkr, started the proceedings, expertly throwing on a couple of tracks the crowd apparently already had stuck in its collective head. The pit overflowed immediately, everyone eagerly sweating out the wait.

After a short break, the anticipated rapper arrived and the crowd joined in a toast. Brown can, for simplicity's sake, rap. With near-otherworldly metaphors -- his Detroit upbringing can be completely understated with the word "unique" -- Danny taps into that all-important exclusivity for every bit of his music. From collaborations with peer A$AP Rocky, to the high pitch vocals -- "Check!" his track fingerprint -- to his overarching Detroit attitude, the 32-year-old has found even great success as he's moved more fully into the spotlight. Born to teenage parents -- his mom and dad were 18 and 16, respectively -- Danny quickly found himself involved in the myriad of ludicrous stories that lace his music and interviews. Teenaged drug dealing the impetus for many of the original tragedies, Danny mines his past for material. "Lie4" is a perfect example: in the song, Danny waxes poetic about "that income tax swag."

Striking his signature pose -- nodding head, tongue stuck out through his missing tooth with the devil horns firmly protruding from his raised left hand -- Mr. Brown kept the pit jumping for 60 straight minutes. "Witit" and "I Will" proved to be the biggest crowd pleasers. Both song-long boasts about his reputation with women, the former shook the venue while the latter featured the pit joining in on the chorus. I had come to the show with a decidedly non-Danny Brown fan, but the sheer, constant energy had her smiling all night long.

Danny's own high-pitched giggle came after announcing his "molly" anthem. Telling of the man and the night, he had already performed one in the AraabMuzik-produced, "Molly Ringwald." No matter for the man whose fans feed off his splurging on the excess -- "Should've popped two, but tonight popped three." Danny, visibly worn -- "Damn St. Louis, ya'll turnt up!" -- finally acquiesced to the sweat pouring down his face. Having touched on damn near every verse that would've been requested -- he left out "Grown Up" but did his verse from Ab-Soul's "Terrorist Threats" -- Danny left fulfilled in the fact nobody remembered it was a Monday.


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