Ice Cube in London (An Honest Review)

Last night, Ice Cube came to London, Ontario with his Straight Into Canada tour.

I was excited for this show for a few reasons. First, I’ve never seen this legend in concert before, and second, he was bringing along another Hip Hop heavyweight with him, Xzibit.

I saw Xzibit back in 1996 and it was one of the best live shows I’ve ever seen. I knew these two legends wouldn’t disappoint. And they didn’t. But the night did have its problems. Ones that I am sure could have been avoided.

First off, DJ Young Legend warmed up the crowd in the most annoying way possible. He played 11 seconds of a song, stopped the music to talk over it and then quickly played another tiny snippet of a different song. He kept asking who likes “Old School” music but never actually played any. All his tunes were from the 90s or early 2000s. That’s not old school. That’s just throwbacks. But I can forgive that parlance.

Then he said something like, “Oh, I forgot about Biggie. Who here knows Biggie?”

What!?! Everyone knows Biggie. And we wanted to hear more than 6 seconds of his music. I seriously don’t get this style of DJing.

He then introduced PJ who quickly showed he didn’t deserve to be on the stage. He performed over vocal tracks and it was almost impossible to hear what he was saying. This set could not have ended quick enough for me.

And after all the yelling the DJ said about getting ready for the show, we’d have to wait for the show to actually start. Perhaps Xzibit was in the back and ready to go, but said, “Nah, I can’t follow that garbage.” So we had to wait 20 minutes for him to come out.

Xzibit killed the stage and brought along Demrick and a DJ to show everyone how Hip Hop’s supposed to sound. It was magically when he dropped “Paparazzi”

Finally, the show I came to see, But then more waiting.

I’m not sure why we had to wait so long for Cube to come out. I would have loved to see the show flow better. Having a DJ spin between sets would have been great. Instead, we had to wait with just house music for the stage to be flipped. And by flipped, I mean removing one table and adding two stage props for Ice Cube.

But when Cube came, he came correct. He brought W.C. with him and this is a man who has an extensive catalogue of his own. I would have loved to see him do a set instead of all the dead time leading up to this. As it was, he only did one verse and it wasn’t even “Bow Down.” He, however, was a great hype-man.

The light show was incredible too. There were some really nice touches. When the spotlights searched the audience during “Ghetto Bird” it was kind of perfect. Kudos to the production team there!

Cube rocked the stage for 90 minutes and closed it off perfectly with “It Was A Good Day.”

It truly was.

I just wish the organizers would have tightened things up a bit. A DJ spinning would have helped. The downtime between acts could have been eliminated or decreased significantly. And we could have had three hours of awesomeness.

At least, these three legends all knew how to perform. Peter Jackson needs to take notes or retire. Rapping over vocals is completely unacceptable.

That’s my word!