If I were to pick an album from the past decade that I would personally consider a masterpiece, my first choice would definitely be To Pimp A Butterfly by Kendrick Lamar. I was hooked by the combination of the politically charged lyrics combined with the experimental jazz production. The album both paved the way for me to develop a fascination for hip-hop and appreciate the work of Kendrick Lamar. So, when I heard last December that Kendrick Lamar was going to be performing at Fuji Rock in Japan this year, I knew that it would be my best chance to see him perform for a long time, considering his critically acclaimed DAMN. Tour was coming to a close. I had extremely high expectations for this set, to the point I was worried that I was gonna overhype it and disappoint myself in the process.
But that wasn’t the case at all…
For his first song, Kendrick Lamar performed the spectacular opening track, DNA, from his Pulitzer Prize-winning album DAMN, and I have to say at that moment I knew the 2900km plane journey from Hong Kong to Japan, as well as the pain I had to endure being drenched in the freezing cold was well worth it. Kendrick Lamar’s set was highly energetic from start to end, filled with hits such as King Kunta, XXX, Money Trees.
My only critique of the set was the lack of songs from To Pimp A Butterfly since the set chose songs from Kendrick Lamar’s more mainstream albums. But nonetheless, I would still wholeheartedly recommend seeing Kendrick Lamar when he goes on his next tour if you're either a fan of his work or hip-hop music in general.