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Wednesday, July 1, 2009

Lupe Fiasco @ Summerfest

June 29, 2009

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Making his return to the Miller Lite Oasis stage to the sounds of "Genesis," the ominously climactic track from the electro-pop duo Justice, Chicago rapper Lupe Fiasco wasted no time creating an environment of reciprocal energy between himself and the audience.

Launching into an hour-plus set with "The Instrumental" from 2006 Food & Liquor, Lupe consistently displayed his verbal dexterity with tracks like "Go Go Gadget Flow" and "I Gotcha."

"Hip-Hop Saved My Life" was a refreshing reminder that despite all the negativity surrounding current rap music, there is still a prominent figure in today's mainstream hip hop scene who carries a message that resonates over materialism and ring-tone rap. An obligatory Michael Jackson tribute medley, consisting of a string of Jackson's tunes mixed by Lupe's DJ, had the rapper dancing around the stage praising Jackson. He even made a halfhearted attempt at a moon walk.

The very participatory crowd was receptive to the entire set, but was especially vocal during "Kick Push," Lupe's summertime skateboarding anthem, and "Superstar," the rapper's biggest hit to date.

Ending the set that until then had been a fair split between the two albums already under his belt, Lupe brought the concert to a close with the recently leaked "Shining Down," the soon to be first single from his upcoming album, Lasers. He announced that he was finished recording the album and that it should be released by December.