Kanye West in concert: What concert lacks in sound quality is made up for by West’s showmanship

Posted on Nov 3 2013 - 4:13pm by Guest Writer

By Tahnayee Clendinen, A&E Writer

When Kanye West stepped onto the Key Arena’s makeshift stage Oct. 19, the air outside was crisp, seats were jam packed and people were sweaty and loving every minute of it.

The sound system blared as Kendrick Lamar recited the lines of “Poetic Justice.”

The bass made the ground tremble beneath our feet. As Lamar walked off stage, we quickly switched from applause to chanting “Kanye, Kanye!”

Eventually, the chants died out and he stepped on stage.

As he came out on stage, the crowd went silent for an awkward few minutes. We wanted West to do something. To jump, fall or even move. He just stood there staring at us.

Suddenly, he let out a blood curdling yell that caused us all to look around, bewildered. The first song he performed was from his new album “Yeezus.”

The speakers were so loud it just sounded like static, but we didn’t care.

In normal Kanye West style, the show was full of moments that would undoubtedly cause nothing but controversy. The dancers on stage for most of the show were dressed in nude costumes or as nuns and preachers. More than once, props and ceremonies used during the show resembled those of actual Catholic ceremonies.

West even went so far as to have a Jesus impersonator walk the stage with him. Many people were taken aback by this, and it was apparent that this act caused a few people to leave the show.

Another interesting aspect was West’s style of dress. His first performance outfit was a ski mask covered in precious stones, a long tank that could easily be mistaken for a dress and baggy skinny jeans that didn’t cover West’s nether regions. West later performed in nothing but jeans and a jacket, baring his chest during the second half of the show.

The first half of the concert was focused around West’s latest album. While we were excited about this, most of those in attendance were waiting for classic Kanye songs.

These came in the second half of the show beginning with “Heartless” and ending with one of his earliest tracks, “Through the Wire.”

It was a huge disappointment that he did not perform the songs that catapulted him to fame. Hits like “Good Life” and “Gold Digger” were not a part of the set list.

Overall, even though it was a static-filled, noisy, sweaty place, the Key Arena was the place to be Oct. 19. What the venue lacked in sound quality, West made up for in showmanship and performance. His antics on stage left the crowd entertained and mentally reminding ourselves to buy tickets to see his next show.