The New Danny Brown

Vortex Music Magazine

Seemingly sober but full of energy, Portland threw the ball back to Danny Brown with just as much vigor as he brought to the Roseland Theater stage on Sunday, May 11.

Danny Brown sporting his new do at Twitter HQ.Danny Brown sporting his new do at Twitter HQ.

On tour promoting his new album Old, the tongue-flapping Danny Brown hit the Roseland stage on Sunday night with a fresh style as he donned a fashionable black leather vest, vintage glasses, and an orange-frosted afraux hawk. Throughout his set, he used the convention of shedding clothes and accessories piece by piece, ending in his purest, raw form—Danny Brown wearing a Danny Brown T-shirt.

Brown employs three distinctive vocal styles in his verses: a nasally, wild hype voice, a tough gangster voice, and his relaxed, morning-after-the-party voice. But on Sunday night, he deployed only one: hype. The jumping, singalong, frenzied audience wouldn't have wanted anything else.

All the songs in his set were straight bangers backed by Detroit techno beats from SKYWLKR (who had his own wardrobe variation for Portland: a number zero Blazers jersey). Less than half of the set was from Old as Brown spent the rest of his time cherry-picking choice tracks from previous albums and mixtapes. It was a tour de force of his signature hype songs, from “#ExpressYourself” (audio below), “Monopoly” and “WitIt” (NSFW video below) to “Smokin & Drinkin.” To watch the seemingly sober (weed excluded, of course) Danny Brown rhyme with nightmarishly cartoony excitement through his hype catalog—mowee wowee what a spectacle.

The Roseland crowd witnessed the next-to-last solo show of The Old Danny Brown Tour as many of his upcoming dates are summer festival appearances. Portland can be proud that we threw the ball back to him with plenty of energy as he looks to finish the tour strong. However, something tells me he won't have to rely on us. He might not have as much Molly or codeine coursing through his veins lately, but it looks like this older Danny Brown has something new—straight energy, bruh.

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