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Big K.R.I.T., Club Red, 8/2/12

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Big K.R.I.T. Club Red Thursday, August 2, 2012

See also: Big K.R.I.T.'s Blowing Up, but the Rapper's Got Underdog Appeal Success can sometimes have a funny way of taking the edge away from competitors. In the ever-growing rap game, artists are often a one-hit wonder away from retirement.

Southern rapper Big K.R.I.T. has experienced his fair share of success since 2010's breakout mixtape K.R.I.T. Wuz Here announced his arrival and now with his latest album, Live From the Underground, still giving critic's whiplash, the Mississippi-native is primed for more.

But will he be a "one-and-done" musician that gets fat from too much success? If last night's performance at Club Red in Tempe is any indication, not likely.

K.R.I.T. tackled each track during his hour long set with so much intensity and veracity that the crowd will be talking about this show for some time.

I got to the venue around the time tour supporter Tito Lopez was scheduled to perform, but he had to scrap his appearance because of a sore throat. Sounding notably hoarse, Lopez came out to apologize to the crowd personally.

At around 10:20 p.m., Los Angeles-native Casey Veggies appeared for a brief showing that really didn't do much to work up the crowd. His laid back beats and swagged-out lyrics mostly fell on deaf ears from where I was standing, until the notes for "Toe Tag" filled the air and got a rise from the audience. But after only a 20-minute set, there wasn't much else to remember.

K.R.I.T. turned everything around once he took the stage. With the help of some wall-shaking bass, the kind that makes your shirt tremble against your chest and your teeth rattle, he snapped everyone to attention opening with "Boobie Miles."

"Cool 2 Be Southern" and "4EvaNaDay" picked up the pace and got concertgoers really moving. "You came to the wrong show to be tired," K.R.I.T. warned early in his set. His coarse cries and animated movements energized the crowd closest to the stage, while the rest of the venue showed a healthy bounce.

The rest of the set was full of fan-favorite tracks that brought out plenty of sing-alongs and fist-pumping. Even when he slowed down the pace, his careful croon hit with equal ferocity. Midway through the set he instructed everyone to put their middle fingers in the air and ripped into the bridge to, "I Got This."

"Fuck these haters, fuck these hoes," the crowd responded excitedly. But it proved to only be a teaser. "It ain't time for that song yet," he said. He saved the best for last, choosing to close the show with the outstanding track.

K.R.I.T. tweeted yesterday, "As soon as I jumped off the bus I got attacked by a heat wave." Looks like he brought some heat of his own.

Critic's Notebook:

Last Night: Big K.R.I.T.

The Crowd: Mostly dudes. And some familiar faces from the local hip-hop talent pool.

Overheard in the crowd: "I was 14 the first time I smoked crack."

Random Notebook Dump: I'm way over the horn/siren blare thing.

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