Vic Mensa | Metro | Hip-Hop | Chicago Reader
This is a past event.
When: Fri., Nov. 28, 7 p.m. 2014
Price: sold out
Vic Mensa’s breezy, beautifully soulful 2013 mixtape Innanetape—the Chicago rapper’s full-length debut under his own name—would’ve made a great first impression if it had actually been a first impression. But Mensa, now 21, cut his teeth in popular hybrid-rock group Kids These Days, who broke up in spring 2013, and for a few years he helped lead hip-hop collective Save Money—alongside a close friend whose name starts with “C” and rhymes with “Ance the Rapper,” and whose runaway success has put a lot of pressure on him to follow suit. Though Innanetape is a little uneven, its failings come mostly from Mensa’s tendency to dwell on his past accomplishments and undersell his present talents. Fortunately he seems to have remembered how to assert himself this year, at least judging from the sound of the singles and one-off songs he’s dropped in advance of his forthcoming releases for Virgin EMI (everything is still tentative, but he’s supposed to have an EP called Street Lights and an album called Traffic). The sleek, house-inspired single “Down on My Luck,” which came out this spring, showcases Mensa’s cool, fluid rapping—he rhymes like a kid sliding across a freshly waxed floor in his socks, and even when you think he’s overdue to pause for breath he’s got a few more butter-smooth lines left in him. —Leor Galil
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