On Friday night in Echo Park Converse Rubber Tracks presented its latest concert event inside the low-ceilinged Echoplex.
It only seems right that this performance is unrestricted, though. At 21, Staples’ young age was only made starker by the presence of Antwon, his significantly older support act. Antwon was handpicked by Staples because he recorded at the Converse Rubber Tracks studios.
After the third song of his set, Antwon sang the Backstreet Boys’ ‘I Want It That Way’ with the audience. Vince Staples was six when that song was first released.
Having begun his set with ‘Back Selling Crack’ and ‘Fire’ – Staples fizzed unpredictably around the stage like a Mento inside a Coke bottle.
Staples has blown up quickly over the past couple of years and he certainly gives that impression. Confident and passionate, he gives off the vibe of someone who’s listened to his own hype but doesn’t yet believe it.
The rapper was enjoying his gig even more than the front nine or ten rows of the audience, who helped his Cutthroat Boyz ally Joey Fatts crowd-surf when he appeared two thirds of the way into the show.
Vince Staples is also a rapper who has something to say. ‘Hands Up,’ which came up right in the middle of the set seemed especially relevant after in the aftermath of Ferguson. With his finger on the pulse of his audience, problems with the police came up time and time again.
Staples put on a solid performance in Echo Park. He seems like a man grateful for his audience.
Aside from his better known tracks like ‘Blue Suede’ Staples mixed up his set with raps like ‘Humble’ from one of his earlier mixtapes.
If he bears that track’s title in mind, we could be seeing more of him soon.