Kanye West drew in thousands of hyped millennials to the new Roger’s Arena in Edmonton for a night of ear-splitting, mosh-pitting, rage-dancing, action with a touch of ‘history in the making.’

A thick haze filled the tops of the venue. On the floor, security guards kept a close eye on the rope which separated VIP ticket purchasers from the stage as fans chanted “Yeezy” repeatedly. It was a packed house for Mr. West with 16,000 in attendance, but still not a sell out in the new arena.

Around 9:15 p.m., an hour later than scheduled, the lights cut to black and the crowd went into hysteria. Yeezus is in the building, it’s about to go down.IMG 3049 BODYIMAGEThousands of millennials chanted “Yeezus” as he stood solemnly on his platform. Photo by Patrick Gibson

“Father Stretch My Hands” opened up the show, and Mr. West walked out and stood solid on his platform in silence.

The stage began to rise above the crowd with the 39-year-old stationed on top.

At that moment, the rope was yanked back by security as the heaping herd of Kanye-loving fans stampeded toward him. It was like watching hundreds of farm animals escape from their enclosure and flock towards their shepherd.

West seemingly flew dozens of feet above their heads, and their roaring faces were highlighted by orange and red beaming lights.

In typical West fashion, he abruptly stopped singing his popular song, “Famous” not once, or twice but three times to hype up the crowd about the controversial, but catchy track.

“This song is told to be remembered for the rest of time,” West screamed.

From there, the rapper dove into a 30-song setlist circling and bouncing around his platform, blowing the roof off the building. There was not a single person in their seat.

His rendition of Drake’s, “Pop Style” set the mood of the entire show. With thousands of screaming fans, West didn’t need to supply a lot of vocals, which he didn’t with the ambient sounds from tracks like “Freestyle 4” and “Runaway.”

IMG 3705 body2Kanye West played the hits off his newest album, The Life of Pablo but didn’t forget to please the crowd with his classics. Photo by Maria Dardano

“Black Skinhead” shook the ground to the point where the stage looked like it was about to tip over into the blood-thirsty fans waiting to grab a hold of their saviour.

The crowd seemed to slow down when “Power”, off of West’s fifth album, My Beautiful Dark Twisted Fantasy, came into play.

However, “Blood on the Leaves” and “Jesus Walks” brought the crowd back on their feet in both volume and energy.

“Lights up!” He screamed to his crowd while performing “Flashing Lights” In a matter of moments, the entire room was fluttering in lights.

A highlight of the concert was when “Heartless”, a beloved ‘oldie’ of West, was sung along by everyone. He put the mic by his side while he let the audience do his work for him.

The spoken-word track, “I Love Kanye” gave everyone a chance to scream about how Kanye simply just loves Kanye.

“Waves” was also a ground-shaker with its God-like chants and auto-tuned notes.

The entertainer stood at the edge of his stage intertwined in his red hot lights, arms wide open embracing the crowd in his ‘Yeezy-ness’. He had the whole audience by their throat.

West closed his performance with two fan favorites from his newest album The Life of Pablo. “Fade” brought a certain grooviness to the atmosphere; it was a dance party everywhere you looked. His final song of the night, “Ultralight Beam,” lit up the building with ice blue hues and angelic chants — Hallelujah!

And just like that, the stage descended into a sort of black hole. The fluorescent lights popped on catching everyone by surprise. The crowd roared for more Kanye, but, alas, there was going to be no more Kanye. No thank you’s, no goodbyes, just a mystical disappearance of Yeezus himself.

An encore was not called on because, well, it’s Kanye West.


The editor responsible for this piece is Maria Dardano and can be contacted at mdardano@cjournal.ca

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