Published Oct 26, 2018The Toronto Red Bull Music Festival has kept us on our toes for the past seven days, but for their final night, they brought the newest voices of the rap and R&B world together: Yasmine, Pilla B, the Sorority, Ebhoni and Lil Berete.
Stripping down Love Child Social House to its bare bones for one night only, memories of its former years [aka the Hoxton] came flooding back — as did the heat, which layered over attendees as the venue filled up.
Kicking off the night, Scarborough rapper Yasmine, who's part of arts and music collective 88 Days of Fortune, performed songs from her January release, No Squad In The Wild, with a easy confidence to a room that was still packing in. Following a quick changeover, Public Records signee Pilla B brought humour, dancing and melodic deliveries to the stage, engaging a large part of the room rapping back to him bar-for-bar — it became evident quickly that he was the people's champ.
The third act of the night came in the form of four-member rap group the Sorority, who, despite their coast-to-coast tour this year, were perhaps the lesser-known artists in the room last night. Regardless, Pheonix Pagliacci, Keysha Freshh, Haviah Mighty and Lex Leosis not only won over the crowd, but also the weary sceptics who weren't sure what to expect until they heard the effortless deliveries. In the infamous words of Toronto veteran rapper Eternia, "My favourite rapper wears a skirt."
With all the energy in the room, songstress Ebhoni slowed it down with a sensual performance before breaking her set to introduce two new rappers — SooDope and Spadez. It was an interesting move for an artist who's still a new name to many, despite her 63K following on Instagram, but a touching moment nevertheless.
Closing out the night was 17-year old Regent Park rapper and New Gen/XL Recordings signee Lil Berete (pictured). Earlier in the year, Lil Berete was forced to cancel his first major show in Toronto (by police), which created a unparalleled anticipation that led to last night. Performing songs from his debut mixtape Icebreaker, the young artist captivated the crowd with his presence and radiated "kid in a candy store" energy.
What happened last night at the Red Bull Music Festival wasn't so much a "Collision," as they named the event, but rather a cohesive night of good vibes and great music.