Vince Staples @ College Street Music Hall

The first impression when Vince Staples steps onto the stage is that he doesn’t “look like” your average rap artist. If you know his music, this would not come as a shock to you. Lyrically, Staples isn’t the average either. Staples has been open about the fact that he used to live the life of a gangbanger. Growing up in Long Beach, California, he was emersed in gang culture. Now, Staples lives a straight-edge lifestyle and his lyrics strip the glamour from gang culture, while others aim to glorify it.

After Armani White and Buddy amped-up the crowd at College Street Music Hall on a Tuesday night, Vince Staples came out adorned with fitted pants and a t-shirt, wearing all black with the exception of his multi-color blue and orange sneakers. It was a large stage for just one person, but he used every bit of it. For the first 4 songs, Staples brought a dynamic performance, decorating the entire stage. He then took it to the standing mic for a few, starting with “745.” Simple, but versatile at the same time, every minute of his performance was engaging. Whether he’s bouncing around the stage or delivering his music while standing in one place, Staples feeds wisdom through a powerful flow of lyrics. With Staples, there is no front. What you see is what you get – and we like what he delivers.

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