On the Montreal metro system, I explored the curiosities in my mind about what Young Braised would be like on stage. Going in different directions, I thought about how his image was premeditated on comedic presence. After all, his YouTube videos straddle the line between art and your typical teenage comedic behaviour.
When I got there I realized that he was the only hip-hop act playing at the venue. It seemed strange that a hip-hop act would be sandwiched in between a bunch of indie rock acts. But at events like Pop Montreal, often hip-hop acts are not only underrepresented but also thrown into shows where they feel out place.
Despite this, the Vancouver MC came to the stage and killed it in front of a packed room at Kathy and Kimy’s. If you know anything about Young Braised, you know that he carries a different approach than most other rappers. To say that his show was a bit different than seeing a more traditional rapper would be an understatement.
The second you walk into the room, he grabbed your attention with his (what I’m assuming is) pre-show ritual. No word of a lie: he stretched. I mean, like toe touches and shit. Then, out of nowhere, he grabbed the mic and started going at it. While the crowd was semi-confused at first, by the time they caught up, YB was in full swing, hitting the crowd with a presence I didn’t expect. Your gaze gravitated towards him. His off-kilter unconventional image juxtaposed against his approach on the mic had the room focused on him.
Confidence was brimming as he moved through his set with control, employing an interactive element switching between pre-recorded video on the venue’s display and his live set, which added a comedic aspect. After all how many dudes come at you with Brittany Murphy and Donald Faison references a minute before he says “I put your whole crew on life support.”
He played a diverse set with his tracks having different genres as their bases. He moved seamlessly from lo-fi chill wave production to ’80s funk-based tracks. The crowd did know his standards, perking up when he played ‘Pensacola’ and his latest track to get shine off his new EP Japanese Tendencies, ‘Murakama’.
While he’s relatively new, he didn’t have the same hold ups as most rappers have at first transitioning from just recording to live performance. His flow was the same as his recorded stuff with only a few hiccups. While his set was unexpected, it was definitely enjoyable.
For more on Young Braised, visit www.youngbraised.com.