Jazz Cartier Danforth Music Hall, Toronto ON, May 9
Published May 10, 2015Following his sold out, swinging-from-the-rafters Friday (May 8) show at The Garrison, which served as a coronation performance for the rising Toronto rapper, Jazz Cartier got the chance to test out songs from debut project Marauding In Paradise, and his visuals, in a larger venue, opening for New York's Joey Bada$$.
Taking the stage promptly to the cinematic spoken word intro of "Guardian Angel," the 22-year-old performed in front of a projector screen showing G20 protest footage of burning police cars, various film scenes (The Shining and British rom-com Like Crazy, from which he samples dialogue from on "Rose Quartz/Like Crazy"), and his own gritty, downtown Toronto-centric music videos.
While he only has a handful of shows under his belt, Cartier ("Or Jacuzzi to the ladies," he informed the audience with a knowing wink) is a confident performer, stalking the stage and using every square inch of space at his disposal. Like the night's headliner, he draws influences from the '90s rappers he grew up on (Biggie, Ja Rule circa Murder Inc.), while incorporating brash electro beats, gothic trap and bleary-eyed soul ("Count On Me").
When it came time for the one-two punch of "Switch" and "The Downtown Cliché," the rapper ditched his shirt and made his way into the all-ages crowd, thrashing and spraying water. "If you haven't got the memo, there's a new sheriff in town," he said halfway through his set. Considering the number of people chanting "'Cuzzi" by the end of his set, the message was received loudly and clearly.