Deniro Farrar, Well$
Tremont Music Hall
June 13, 2014
Deniro Farrar walked onto the Tremont Music Hall stage while taking off his shirt to reveal a chest full of tattoos and a better view of the braids flopping over his head. The rapper, like a number of other acts throughout the night, calls Charlotte his home and constantly reminded the crowd of this fact. But the need for such proclamations seemed odd, if this is truly one's "hometown."
The crowd ebbed-and-flowed with each new rapper who walked into the spotlight as people would embrace the new performer or fall back from the stage.
A few weeks ago, Deniro released his first major label album, Rebirth, which is filled with harsh reality raps that detail the issues of his day-to-day life in strikingly real ways. He peppered those tracks among his set along with higher tempo songs, like last year's "Big Tookie" that received a rapturous response.
Deniro appeared to have the crowd's full attention from the start as people jumped up and yelled his lyrics, but the excitement quickly dissipated. He gave a brief talk before performing "Rebirth / Hold On" about the personal narrative of the track, but details that can be gripping on record fell apart performed live. By the end of the night, the crowd had shrunk to those most vocal in support of Farrar, but one of the previous acts, Well$, was front-and-center in support of his fellow Charlotte performer.
Well$, a 19-year-old rapper, who recently put out his first mixtape, worked with the most energy of any performer throughout the evening. His youthful energy stood out among the other performers, who either lacked the persona or the right music to grab the audience.
Though the show was a homecoming of sorts for Deniro, it was Well$ with a spark of potential ahead of him that shined during the evening. The night was a showcase of Charlotte rap, but hopefully performers will not need to rely on shared area codes for hometown support.