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Tyler, The Creator shut ’em down at Pemberton [Review]

Pemberton, BC – On Jul. 18, Tyler, The Creator hit the Mt. Currie stage at Pemberton Music Festival 2014 for a performance that would make your mamma blush. I mean, Tyler is quite the little charmer: “What’s up, assholes?” he yelled. Countless times. This is – apparently – a thing. Tyler calls everyone, “asshole.” Tyler has intentionally made himself out to be rap’s poster child for all things completely obnoxious.

Let me clarify what I mean when I say “obnoxious.” I don’t mean hard-hitting, macking-on-the-ladies-and-popping-bottles-in-VIP obnoxious. Nope. Tyler is the kind of obnoxious synonymous with N-bombs, F-bombs, and everything “Jamba” (which means “fart” in Swahili, and “marijuana” in Krio; at least, that’s what RapGenius told me). It’s all shock-value. Not really a bad thing, though. Tyler is a kid. And he reduces the most serious of grown adults to giggling juvenile rap renegades. Check the official HipHopCanada show review after the jump.

Tyler, The Creator shut 'em down at Pemberton [Review] -

Sarah: Tyler performed a monster setlist including “Tron Cat,” “Domo23,” Bastard,” and all of the other distinctly Tyler jams (alongside his Odd Future partner-in-crime, Jasper Dolphin). Between songs, Tyler hammed with the audience; it’s kind of his forte. He poked fun at the screaming Odd Future fans by telling them that they didn’t need to yell “Tyler” at him because he already knew his own name. Cute.

And because he’s still so young, Tyler takes immense pleasure in the things that most of us would deny ever liking; including the deep desire we all have to become superheroes. Cue: Tyler’s transformation into Capeman. Here’s how that all went down: Tyler saw a dude out in the audience wearing a red and white striped cape. So of course Tyler had to get in on that. Because capes. So he got his people to bring the man in the cape on to the stage. He took the cape. Put it on. And let the cape’s owner watch him perform from the side of the stage. Cape owner man had a very precious fanboy moment. And Tyler had a cape. Win-win situation.

At one point – Tyler took a minute to single out every single black person at the show. There were less-than 20 in attendance at the show (by his calculations, at least). Tyler proceeded to go off about how white people were awful (That’s me paraphrasing. His words were much more…colourful. Literally). And to wrap up the set, Tyler took off all of his clothes, brought the Odd Future boys on stage and wilded out. Because nothing brings closure to a monstrous performance quite like stripping down to one’s underoos and dancing with the homies in near-nakedness.

The Odd Future shenanigans didn’t end there, either. Odd Future opened up a pop-up shop and skateboard park on-site at the festival. Tyler launched the second installment of his Golf Wang collaboration with Vans Syndicate (which featured a 3-pack of Old Skool Pro “S” shoes, as well as an exclusive Golf Wang Tumblr t-shirt). Tyler kicked it at the skate park. He boarded and signed autographs for his fans. And this is part of the reason why I have such a soft spot for Tyler. See, a lot of rap cats are adamant about showing gratitude to their fans. But it’s all smack-talk. They don’t show up for their people. Tyler is different. Sure, he calls his fans “assholes,” and stuff. But he makes a point of showing up and being there for his people. Hence, my big soft spot for him (Hi, Tyler!).

I didn’t end up hitting up the shop until the last day of the festival (Sunday), so the goods were pretty picked-over at that point. There were three hats left, a couple of sweaters, and a handful of men’s t-shirts (all sized large – ugh). The collection is now available online at But I have to warn you: last time I checked, the sneakers were all sold out.

Sarosh: Tyler only solidified his place as being one of most polarizing artists in hip-hop today. The show was great, and represented everything I like and can’t stand about him as an artist. It was high energy, interactive and unashamedly honest. But at the same time, it had its immature, schtiky moments. Him and Jasper have natural energy on stage and are genuinely funny, especially when they take shots at each other. We got a preview of that when they became our impromptu tour guides on the bus in from Whistler hours earlier.

The best parts of the show were Tyler’s moments with the crowd. He took the time to not only hype the crowd up but honestly interact with them; telling the audience before performing his favorite track to put their phones down because they don’t have to record everything and can just enjoy the moment before telling them exactly when they have to lose their minds. He had a genuine moment with a fan (whose glasses he’d spotted a dozen rows in, and wanted to borrow). When he returned them, the appreciation was genuine. Mix all that in with hype tracks, boundless energy some of the filthiest beats that mark Tyler’s hits and it makes for a great show.

The tradeoff for that were the times of forced humor. A half dozen anal beads jokes after someone threw beads on stage, some of the same jokes him and Jasper used on the bus ride. Not that they were terrible, by any means. And maybe it has more to do that I happen to be in the minority of people who don’t cheer when being called an asshole repeatedly, but those moments felt unnecessary. Because the show was ill. My take on Tyler remains mostly unchanged – I’d love him if he made it when he was a bit older. And you can’t fault him for being his age. For now though, he’s that artist that I’m all for, as long as it is from a distance.

Written by Sarah Sussman and Sarosh Rizvi for HipHopCanada
Photography by Sarah Sussman for HipHopCanada

Notice: The views and opinions expressed in this page are strictly those of the author and are not necessarily those of HipHopCanada or its affiliates.

Photography by Sarah Sussman

Tyler, The Creator shut 'em down at Pemberton [Review] -

Tyler, The Creator shut 'em down at Pemberton [Review] -

Tyler, The Creator shut 'em down at Pemberton [Review] -

Tyler, The Creator shut 'em down at Pemberton [Review] -

About Huka Entertainment

New Orleans, LA-based HUKA Entertainment is a privately held full-service production, talent-buying and promotion company that specializes in festivals, concerts and events of all sizes. Known for groundbreaking innovation at festivals throughout North America, HUKA Entertainment produced the Concerts for the Coast series featuring Jimmy Buffett, Bon Jovi and Brad Paisley; is the co-founder, producer, talent-buyer and promoter of the award-winning Rock The Ocean’s Tortuga Music Festival (Ft. Lauderdale, FL); is the co-founder, producer, talent buyer and promoter of Pemberton Music Festival (Pemberton, BC); and the co-producer and co-promoter of BUKU Music + Art Project (New Orleans, LA) and is the co-founder, producer, talent buyer and co-promoter of the award-winning Hangout Music Festival (Gulf Shores, AL). HUKA Entertainment also books talent for and/or promotes a variety of concerts and events throughout the Southeastern United States.

About The Sunstone Group

The Sunstone Group is a Canadian owned family business with operations in both the real estate and entertainments sectors. In addition to the Pemberton Music Festival, the Sunstone Group has a number of other business interests in the Pemberton Community, including a land development, establishment of an independent boarding school, and ownership of the Meadows at Pemberton Golf Course.

About the Village of Pemberton

Pemberton is one of the fastest-growing communities in BC and home to family farms, fresh outdoor adventures and stunning vistas. The Village of Pemberton (VOP) is home to over 2400 residents and works in cooperation with neighbouring communities and key business and tourism partners such as Tourism Pemberton and the Pemberton Chamber of Commerce on community planning, service provision and events. Pemberton’s mild winters, warm summers and unique pioneer heritage provide an ideal place to enjoy arts, culture, history, recreation, dining, shopping and comfortable lodging.

About Whistler Blackcomb

Since 1992 Whistler Blackcomb has been focused on the development and execution of an environmental management strategy with the goal of developing a model of environmental and social stewardship for ski and mountain resort operations. Since that time, the company has been recognized for its efforts with countless awards, and has the honour of being named one of Canada’s Greenest Employers (2009, 2010, 2011). Today, Whistler Blackcomb is a four-season resort with a world-renowned Mountain Bike Park on Whistler Mountain, a 22-feet Olympic-sized halfpipe on Blackcomb Mountain, and five Terrain Parks to fuel progression at every level from beginners to elite athletes. The mountains play host to countless festivals and events each year including the legendary TELUS World Ski & Snowboard Festival each April, and Kokanee Crankworx Mountain Bike Festival each August, in addition to playing host to the world as the official alpine skiing venue for the 2010 Olympic and Paralympic Winter Games.

About Tourism Whistler

Tourism Whistler is the member-based marketing and sales organization representing Whistler, operating the Whistler Conference Centre, Whistler Golf Club, Whistler Visitor Centre, as well as 1.800.WHISTLER and – Whistler’s official source for visitor bookings and information. As the convention and visitors bureau for the Resort Municipality of Whistler, Tourism Whistler represents more than 7,000 members who own, manage and operate properties or businesses on resort lands including hotels, restaurants, activity operators and retail shops.

About the Squamish-Lillooet Regional District

Located in southwestern BC, the Squamish-Lillooet Regional District (SLRD) is a local government federation consisting of four rural electoral areas (A, B, C, and D) and four member municipalities (Lillooet, Pemberton, Whistler and Squamish). Headquartered in Pemberton, the SLRD delivers a range of local, regional and sub-regional services to approximately 38,000 residents. Straddling the southern Pacific Ranges of the Coast Mountains and encompassing 16,500 square kilometers of land, the SLRD features some of the province’s most spectacular forests, glaciers, rivers and lakes as well as an abundance of fertile agricultural land, much of which is found in Electoral Area C, near Pemberton.

About Tourism Pemberton

Tourism Pemberton is an independent not-for-profit destination marketing organization dedicated to promoting tourism and travel for Pemberton, BC and surrounding region. The area was developed at the turn of the century as a result of forestry and agriculture. The Pemberton Valley lies northwest of the Village and is famous for its seed potatoes. The Pemberton area offers world-class activities and recreation including snowmobiling, horseback riding, skiing, golfing, hiking, rafting, jet boating and gliding. The district also provides a variety of shopping, dining, accommodations and a thriving service and light industrial sector. Pemberton – Adventure Begins Here.

Twitter: @fucktyler | @Pemberton_Fest

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Sarah Jay

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Sarah Jay is based in Calgary and works as a freelance journalist and photographer. Sarah is also a former A&R talent scout for the Universal Music Scouting Program, and runs a vintage store during the day. Sarah has juried the JUNO Awards, The Polaris Music Prize, and The Prism Prize. She has been fortunate enough to interview and photograph some of hip-hop's greatest influencers including Future, ScHoolboy Q, Ghostface Killah, Moka Only, Maestro Fresh Wes, Shad, Joey Bada$$, Mac Miller, and more. Follow Sarah on Twitter: @ThisIsSarahJay

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