Machine Gun Kelly
Presented by Dope Entertainment
Grand Central, Miami
Tuesday, July 22, 2014
Better Than: A rock show. Or a rap show.
"Welcome to the greatest show on Earth. Lace the fuck up."
There's only one place in Miami where you can comfortably rock Lebron James' Cavaliers jersey without drawing awkward stares. And that's Grand Central. At least when it's a Machine Gun Kelly party.
Last night, the Cleveland spitter threw it down in the 305, rapping songs off his various mixtapes and his debut studio album, Lace Up.
"Let me tell you something, when I looked at the tour schedule and saw Miami, I did not expect this," confessed MGK, "I thought everyone was going be too cool, not giving a shit. But if I was sleeping on this city, I apologize. I am now waking the fuck up."
Backed by a full-band more fitting of a punk rock show than a hip hop show, MGK delivered machine-gun raps with passion and intensity to a captivated crowd.
Signed to Diddy's Bad Boy Records and known for his rapid-fire lyrics, MGK rose to fame through the popularity of his mixtapes, which he continues to release today. The latest of these mixtapes is Black Flag, released in 2013.
When we interviewed Machine Gun Kelly he said that there is only a divide between rap and rock if you're ignorant. And nowhere is that more evident than durning one of his shows.
MGK's energy on stage was contagious. It's a wonder he was able to spit his way through his complex rhyme schemes and fast flows with the way he was running and jumping around.
As the show progressed MGK's clothes progressively got more drenched in sweat, until he was performing shirtless showing off his many elaborate tattoos.
There was also a bottle of what appeared to be whiskey making its way around the stage. Throughout the show, MGK would chug from the bottle and pass it off this band-mates.
"The liquor is getting to me," MGK said after a particularly long chug. "My daughter is coming into town tomorrow and we're going to motherfucking Disney World. The thing is, when I'm with my daughter, I want to be totally focused. No drinking, no smoking, no partying. So I had to get it all out tonight. I was getting fucked up all night backstage before coming out."
Although MGK is well-know for representing Cleveland, while in the 305 he was all about Miami.
"Shut the fuck up and let me tell this story," belted MGK, "One time I was riding around South Beach on one of those rented scooters, and I thought I looked cool as fuck. I usually have a hard time talking to girls, like they have to come hit on me, but I saw these two girls and I knew I had to talk to them. I park the scooter, but I didn't know you had to put a fucking kick stand and the scooter falls right over as I'm walking away. I figured I could play it off and these girls would just be thinking it was cute. Anyways, the point to this story is I took mushrooms and had my first threesome. If that's not enough reason to love this city, I don't know what is."
In the middle of rapping his way through a track, MGK set the mic down and walked out onto the audience before jumping up and hanging from the railings of Grand Central's roof. The beat dropped and MGK let go of the railings and fell, trusting his fans to catch him. It was insane.
One specific group of fans near the front of the venue was holding signs sporting #MGKFORCODY. Most people didn't know what this hash-tag phrase meant, so MGK stopped the show and explained its meaning to the crowd.
"Cody Hartwell was a kid from down here that came to every single one of my shows, and he tragically died in a motorcycle accident recently. He was such a good soul, and so incredibly strong. One of the last things Cody shared on his social media was one of my lyrics, 'Question, what if tomorrow never comes?' His family is here tonight and, to his family, I just want to let you know, he had so much heart. I have a daughter and I could never imagine what it feels like. Thank you for letting him be my fan."
It was a surprisingly touching moment in the midst of the craziness that was the rest of the show.
MGK was funny, loud, angry, honest, humble and cocky all at once. But most importantly, he was real.
"All these rappers coming out with songs on the radio and it's like, you don't do any of the fucking shit you talk about. One day, I'ma be old in a nursing home completely sober and that's what I'll rap about. You guys understand me, the main culture they dont understand me. Dude, we're all here in this one building, I can see everyone. That's how it should be. You have faith. And as far as I'm concerned, I'm gonna make goddamned sure I perform the best fucking show for you all."
As far as we're concerned, Machine Gun Kelly did not disappoint.
Personal Bias: Unfortunately, it was pretty hard to make out MGK's lyrics. The combination of his rapid raps and loud backing band kind out drowned out the frontman's vocals.
Machine Gun Kelly's Setlist:
-"State of Mind"
-"Chip off the Block"
-"Swing Life Away"
-"All We Have"
-"Half Naked and Almost Famous"
-"Free the Madness"
-"All Eyes On Me" (New Track)
-"Dark Side of the Moon"
-"See My Tears"
-"EST 4 Life"
-"Mind of a Stoner"
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