Kid Ink at the Fine Line, 6/19/14
Fine Line Music Cafe, Minneapolis
Thursday, June 19, 2014
Los Angeles rapper Kid Ink is currently riding a successful pop run. For a man who's most recognizable hit is the track "Show Me," a song with Chris Brown that has been played incessantly on the radio and in strip clubs everywhere ever since it dropped, his overall catalog is more impressive than just a collection of YouTube videos. These songs seem to translate better into live performance.
The 28-year-old, significantly tattooed rapper hit the Fine Line last night with Atlanta's Zach Farlow, who isn't lacking in the ink department either.
|Fine Line staff member gets down|
Farlow climbed upon stage to a backdrop of shrieking young girls in various stages of undress. Each time he approached the crowd, female hands reached out to caress his legs and reach for his crotch. His pants sagged below his entire ass, and a bejeweled bracelet graced his arm. A bro in a baseball cap emblazoned with the word "DOPE" stood impossibly still, directly in the center of the raging crowd, looking lost. "Get rich or get high!" Farlow proclaimed. Girls everywhere were glued to their cellphones, watching the show through the eye of their iPhone camera lenses.
Farlow was a confident performer. About half way through his set, he took his shirt off to flaunt a nicely sculpted body. He moved gracefully about the stage, at times rambling somewhat incoherently into the microphone, and continuing to sing along with the backing track provided by his DJ. His songs are a reflection of the pain of his youth -- while intervening in an attempted robbery, he was stabbed -- as well as his aspirations.
It was clear that he had an intriguing singing voice, yet it was at times difficult to hear over the vocals in the backing track, which seemed to be Auto-tuned. "He sounds perfect, like Britney Spears!" a fan remarked to her friend. She proceeded to provide her own review: "Obviously he has good tattoos and a nice body. It sounds good, but I just can't tell if he's really that talented."
After Farlow's performance, Audio Perm again played some songs for the restless crowd. Draped in gold chains, he blazed through an interesting mixture YG's "My Nigga" and M.I.A.'s "Paper Planes." When he launched into a track mixed with an LMFAO beat (remember that "I'm in Miami, trick!" song by them?) a drunken conga line addled towards the front of the room. Girls were fanning themselves violently with Farlow's mixtapes, as the temperature inside had risen about ten degrees and the crowd had thickened considerably.
Outside, girls were clustered into two distinct groups: those wearing flip-flops, and those teetering in sky-high stripper heels. The flip-flop girls looked comfortable in casual skirts and tank tops, while the stripper heel girls were swaddled tightly in mini dresses and adorned with carefully styled hair and painstakingly painted-on makeup. Past the fence, a line to the front door was still moving slowly.
Cameras were poised and ready as Kid Ink busted out of the backstage area and ran upon the stage, followed by a hype guy hiding behind dark sunglasses. Girls screamed, Strobe lights flashed, the scent of weed permeated our nostrils, and more clouds of smoke rose above the chaos. Kid Ink crept alongside his hype man in fluid movements, his booming voice seemingly too large to be emanating from such a slight frame.
During "Bossin' Up," Kid Ink moved towards the crowd, his pants falling lower around his waist. Girls again screamed hideously, reaching for his genitals and grabbing at his thighs. "Any of my ladies got any tattoos?" he asked. Sadly, there weren't any ladies who came forward to show theirs. Despite the sad response to his inquiry, he moved aggressively into "Tattoo of my Name," to an enthusiastic crowd response. His stage presence was huge, and the energy level in the room seemed impossibly high. A bouncer standing on the stairs to the left of the stage was imitating the ridiculous dance moves of the girls behind the barricade.