Lil Yachty brought “The Teenage Tour” to Los Angeles Saturday Sept. 16 at The Novo. The eccentric rapper rose to fame on Soundcloud and through his hit single “One Night” off his 2016 mixtape, “Lil Boat.” The mixtape offered a new angle to trap music and has been described by Yachty as “bubblegum trap” according to an interview on VICE News’ music channel, Noisey. Yachty’s music preaches positivity and inclusivity with an overall message of carefree fun. His music is a direct reflection of his lifestyle: he doesn’t eat vegetables or do drugs, has eaten a slice of pizza every day since second grade, showed up to the Grammy’s with skittles grills and had a massive food fight at his album release party.
The show ended a busy day for Yachty, one which started at noon when he brought his pop-up pizza shop to Sunset Boulevard and spent time taking photos with fans who waited in line for hours just to meet him.
At around 10:40 p.m., the lights at The Novo went dark. The DJ asked the crowd if they were ready for Yachty then led a countdown from five. When he hit zero, a smiling Yachty walked out in an all-pink outfit, a lot of shiny jewelry and Nike Air Mags (yes, the shoes from “Back to the Future”).
Yachty’s debut album, “Teenage Emotions,” was one of the most anticipated albums of 2017, according to Complex. It was released May 26 and drew a lukewarm response from critics such as Spin and Pitchfork. The media’s criticism of the album prompted a long response from Yachty to his fans on Instagram, which he concluded by saying “I love you guys always and forever. F*ck the outsiders … do you. See you on tour.”
The first half of Yachty’s set was quirky and positive: he waved to the audience, acknowledged specific fans in the crowd and even brought an audience member who was wearing yellow onstage when he performed “Lady in Yellow.”
“Now I need two people to help me with this next part,” Yachty said to the crowd, which prompted a lot of screaming and hand raising.
Two fans were invited on stage where Yachty mediated a singing competition between them. Yachty oversaw a game of rock-paper-scissors to determine who would sing first.
Not long after the competition, Yachty left the stage, saying he would be back after a commercial break. When he returned, he was in a much more casual outfit: a t-shirt and sweatpants, but still wore all his flashy jewelry.
If the first half of the show was Yachty building a giant sandcastle, the second half was him smashing it into nothing. He ripped through abrasive cuts like “X Men” and “Dirty Mouth,” constantly demanding more energy from the crowd.
Just as everyone was catching their breath, Rae Sremmurd appeared onstage with their number one hit “Black Beatles.” Following Rae Sremmurd was Lil Pump, a rapper who went viral from Soundcloud. Yachty danced along and had a smile on his face the entire time.
Yachty took back control of his show in the most fitting way possible: he had his friends come out on stage with cardboard boxes full of Cheetos, potato chips and candy. After they emptied the boxes into the crowd, Yachty instructed everyone to hold onto what they caught.
“When this song drops, I want you to throw whatever you have in the air and go crazy,” Yachty said.
The lights went dark and “Mase in ’97” played, a song in which Yachty raps at a breakneck pace. Junk food flew around the nightclub and left many covered in Cheeto dust and sour sugar.
Yachty’s set lasted an hour and a half and ended with the optimistic “Forever Young,” a fitting way to describe Yachty himself; he may have turned twenty in August, but Yachty’s teenage lifestyle isn’t changing anytime soon.