Concert Reviews

Schoolboy Q at Sound Academy

Schoolboy Q played the third show of his Blank Face tour Thursday at Sound Academy in Toronto, and let me just say the hype was real. This was my first time attending a Schoolboy Q concert and I wasn’t quite sure what to expect. I was a big fan of Oxymoron but can’t say I’m too familiar with his latest LP, Blank Face. I would come to learn that it’s an album I NEED to get familiar with.

Q kicked off the show with the crowd favourite “Gangsta”. As soon as he stepped foot on the stage everyone went wild. Jumping and throwing their hands in the air, rapping along with him. He explained hoarsely that after his previous shows in Indianapolis and Royal Oak he’d lost his voice, asking the audience to help him out and promising he’d do his best.

Q then performed a variety of hot tracks off his latest LP including ‘By Any Means’, ‘Dope Dealer’, and ‘Tookie Knows 2’ which had the crowd out of control was a highlight of the night for sure. He also threw in a lot of older favourites like ‘Blessed’, ‘Hands on The Wheel’, and ‘Hell of a Night’ which were definitely memorable performances for me, and the audience in it’s entirety. The crowd seemed unified during these performances. Everyone knew the words by heart and everyone sang along together, building on Q’s and each other’s energy.

As the show was getting close to wrapping up, the audience seemed to be getting Impatient to hear his hit song off Blank Face, ‘THat Part’. Well we got what we asked for after an also much awaited performance of ‘Man of The Year’. The opening of ‘That Part’ began to play and the crowd erupted into cheers. I couldn’t help but feel the tiniest amount of hope that Kanye might decide to drop by and grace us with his presence. Unfortunately, not to any surprise, Pablo didn’t show.

I decided to venture into the madness feeling like I was missing out on something. I pushed myself through the sea of moving bodies and found myself in the middle of the crowd caught in all the hype I was only observing from the side lines. The crowd seemingly fed off Q’s vibes on stage, jumping constantly with their hands high.

Q thanked his faithful audience as they begged for more. “I know a lot of artists that would cancel a show because of this” he said about his lost voice. As he left the stage the audience was not ready to say goodbye. Chanting and chanting, hoping Schoolboy would bless them with maybe one more song. Unfortunately, he did not return.

Disappointment set in as people realized Q was not coming back to the stage and the lights began to switch on. As we filed out of the venue I could hear the let down of some fans muttering things like “What kind of show ends at 10:30?”.

Overall the show went terrific. There was never a dull moment. Schoolboy kept his audience on their toes throughout the night with his energy and undeniable talent. Although I could not help but feel some disappointment from the crowd at the end, I think his fans can understand that Q managed to finish an entire show without letting his lost voice inconvenience him and I give him props for that. I believe everyone left feeling more than satisfied with their experience that night. I know I did.