Yung Lean, the Swedish artist, is currently on tour in the US and stopped by Chicago. Since his last visit to Chicago, Lean has released his sophomore album “Warlord”, which is filled with absolute bangers and eccentric visuals. From "Hoover", "immortal", "AF'1s", and "Afghanistan", the rapper drops bars while riding his “Cloudy Wave”. Other than progress, nothing much has changed about Lean, as he’s still working with his sad boy crew, Yung Sherman and Yung God. Both have helped Lean produce his sophomore album by providing rare and unique beats on the "Warlord" album. The rapper who was once considered a joke is now internationally known and has time and time again provided us with great visuals.
Yung Lean’s visit to Chicago wasn’t any less magical. Upon arrival the line was (as expected) very long and filled with millennials wearing the best pieces from their wardrobe. Anti-Social Social Club Club, Supreme, and of course bucket hats. I decided to roam around until everyone was let into the venue and during my downtime, I ironically found a street named "McLean". i took this as a sign that my night would be quite interesting. Around 7:30 I returned to the venue and was well taken care of by the react presents and security staff. I got to chatting with the security guard about how music has changed over the years and at 7:40 the DJ cooked up a new beat and i was notified that was my que. At 8pm, Thaiboy Goon pops out onto the stage performing his hits, which got the crowd going. Yung Sherman followed and Adamn Killah made an appearance. After their set we anxiously waited.. There were many "Yung Lean chants" and people guessing what lean could be possibly doing. At 9:07 the venue got dark . It felt like I was watching WWE again and The Undertaker was coming out. At this point the adrenaline and nerves kicked in but I quickly gathered myself and got my equipment ready. Lean made his way on stage with the towel on his head and proceed to performing. The venue was literally shaking. Coming into the show I had no idea what to expect from the fans and what type of mood the show was going have to but i was provided with that answer very quickly. No matter what was playing, whether it was lean and Thaiboy performing diamonds or hits like "Ghosttown", "How You Like Me Now", "AF1s", "Motorola", "Afghanistan", "Kyoto", "Volt", or "Ginseng Strip 2002", The place was under my feet. I was caught in the moment. My time in the photo pit went by quickly and I was now a part of the crowd. "Yoshi City" and "Ghosttown" were played and it was amazing to me how the words naturally came out of my mouth. I made my way around getting my shots and during that time I witnessed the electrifying effect of lean's music. I have never seen a group of people or self proclaimed sad boys be so turnt about a sad song and I loved it. Everywhere I went to in the venue fans were screaming lyrics at the top of their lungs.
Before I knew it Lean stated that it was his last song. Everything was happening too quickly for me and since i was enjoying it, but i wanted time to slow down. Lean finished the song and I was on my way out when a "Yung Lean" chant started, the beat to Miami Ultra played as Lean ran back out. The few fans that were exiting naturally rushed back. So there i was again and for the last time together we proceeded to turning up to Miami Ultra. As the show ended I wasn’t satisfied, but in a good way. I wanted more. Compare it to eating chocolate, you can simply never have enough. There was a routine waiting for the artist to come out which included me. Lean was a no show which I expected due to the incident in Pittsburg, but you could tell the impact he had on people and how many of us the concert wasn't enough. We wanted to more, it didn't matter if it was the same songs. Lean is criticized for his cloudy rap vibe and singing about nothing. Some even consider him a joke but Lean is electrifying, a performer and simply amazing. To be able to have people shaking a venue to ‘cloudy rap” and sad lyrics is impressive to me. I was guessing the show would be a bunch of millennials singing lyrics and leaning left to right but it was the complete opposite. A performance should have you reminiscing and feeling more connected to the artist. Lean did just that. Me dabbing and yelling lyrics like "fuck school it made me sick, all of my haters, they make me rich" at the Clybourn Metra station at midnight is a testimony to that.
HUGE THANK YOU to React Presents