A Houston-born hip-hop artist and producer affiliated with Kanye West's GOOD Music and T.I.'s Grand Hustle, Travis Scott became known during the early 2010s for his heavily Auto-Tuned half-sung/half-rapped vocal style. Within seven years of his mainstream arrival via West's Cruel Summer compilation…
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“I don’t want no fucking bystanders tonight!” Travi$ Scott declares as the opening chords of his brooding track “Quintana” swell behind him. As soon as the bass drops, he launches into an hour-long musical tirade fueled by trap snares and unadulterated pandemonium. He is an unstoppable force of nature as he vaults the open-air Williamsburg stage, rapping in a frantic, autotune-soaked haze.
A day’s worth of music festival detritus is strewn throughout the crowd, creating a carpet of grime that matches Travi$’s aesthetic flawlessly. The pulsating mass throbs in violent unity, bodies being tossed carelessly around and heated altercations swirling. A mere five minutes into the show, security has already begun plucking injured and rambunctious concertgoers alike from the crowd.
Travi$, notorious for inciting literal riots at his shows, commands the audience to turn “all the way up, and then some.” His barked orders prove to be unnecessary, as the gothic, grungy soundscapes of his setlist alone are enough to inspire even the most reserved attendees to bounce up and down at whiplash-inducing speeds. The sharp scents of danger, excitement and marijuana permeate the air, creating an atmosphere that brings the unapologetic chaos of his music to life. Even while slower tracks such as “Drugs You Should Try” ring through the speakers, the crowd remains ablaze.
The flame is not extinguished until the ominous synth melody of “Antidote” comes to a stark halt as event security summons his set to an untimely end at the unmerciful hands of noise regulations. Despite the collective vocalization of disapproval from the crowd and Travi$’s own insistence to perform at least one final song, the cops are adamant about drawing the night to a close. When he realizes he won’t be able to win this particular battle, Travi$ marches off stage reluctantly, his middle finger perched high above his head.