Dear Kanye … Your Stage Production is Overrated, And What’s Up With The Cheescake?

Concerts

THIS ENTRY WAS WRITTEN 11/30/14 BY A. LEVEL AND IS REPRINTED HERE BY PERMISSION.

A Level: "About to walk into a pool of darkness, with the quasi-naked beekeepers writhing behind him on the cheesecake."

A Level: “About to walk into a pool of darkness, with the quasi-naked beekeepers writhing behind him on the cheesecake.”

Dear Kanye:

Could you please fire your entire production design team? Honestly, who thought it was a great idea for you to perform in a series of masks for virtually the entire concert? And why did you steadfastly refuse to stand *in* the spotlight? If there’s a pool of light and you stand 15 feet off to the side – wearing black clothes and a black mask – you are invisible. When I’ve paid a good amount of money and trekked out to the Staples Center to see you, I’d like to actually *see* you.

It’s a good thing that your ego is so large that it has its own gravitational pull. That at least gave you enough stage presence to compensate somewhat for the completely bizarre (and not in a good way) staging. For most of the show, you were standing on an island that looked like a slice of cheesecake, periodically surrounded by a dozen women in nude body stockings and what looked like beekeeper masks. Then, there was the guy who followed you around from time to time, wearing a get-up that may have been stolen from Sweetums from the Muppets.

Later, you moved onto a main stage that my companion was calling the Fortress of Solitude but that I thought looked like either one of those volcanoes that 3rd graders make out of papier-mâché or like an ice cream cake. The sparker-style fireworks at the end of the show did nothing to dispel those images.

Oh, and rather than having any sort of design, it looked like they’d just turned on the house lights for the back ¼ of the arena. That meant that while you were invisibly perched on the cheesecake, all the techies around the main stage were bathed in harsh, white light. I couldn’t even figure out where you were part of the time, but I had a great view of the quasi-naked acolyte ladies roaming around in the wings and of the dj off to the side. Oh, and nice job on the spike tape – glad to know that your crew uses fluorescent yellow to mark where the equipment should be.

While I’ve sat in what seems like every possible area of the Staples Center over the years, these were also the seats with the worst acoustics I’ve ever experienced there. Was it the location, or was it the sound crew? It’s not clear, but I couldn’t understand a word you said all night. When you add in the incomprehensible Confederate flag merchandise (which I didn’t see firsthand but my companion told me about), this was definitely one of the weirder Odes to One’s Own Greatness. While I can’t say I was at all surprised by your sense of self-importance, I was massively disappointed by the show – when the music is completely forgotten in the process of putting on a show, it’s time to rethink your approach.

Ms. Unknown: "About to walk into a pool of darkness, with the quasi-naked beekeepers writhing behind him on the cheesecake."

A. Level: “About to walk into a pool of darkness, with the quasi-naked beekeepers writhing behind him on the cheesecake.”

Ms. Unknown: "Here, he went from wearing black and standing in the dark to wearing white and standing in front of a white set. Not a big improvement. The monster thing is above him, halfway up the Fortress of Solitude."

A. Level: “Here, he went from wearing black and standing in the dark to wearing white and standing in front of a white set. Not a big improvement. The monster thing is above him, halfway up the Fortress of Solitude.”

Ms. Unknown: "Cheesecake in the front, volcano project/ice cream cake in the back." Friend: "looks like Exhibit A of wedding-cakes-gone-wrong"

A. Level: “Cheesecake in the front, volcano project/ice cream cake in the back.”
Friend: “looks like Exhibit A of wedding-cakes-gone-wrong”

THIS ENTRY WAS WRITTEN 11/30/14 BY A. LEVEL AND IS REPRINTED HERE BY PERMISSION.

This Blog entry is considered editorial. The opinions expressed herein are not the opinions of MusicOfMyMind14, but those of a third party.

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