L.A. Ktown native Dumbfoundead returned to Toronto at the Mod Club this February, for his ‘We Might Die’ tour. Dumb is no stranger to our city, with frequent shows and appearances in the past. This was the rapper’s first appearance since his 2015 battles for King of The Dot World Domination Five. During his set he gave a shoutout to ‘KOTD’ co-founder Gully T.K., who was checking out the show from a balcony. Dumbfoundead has a reputation in this town for showing love to local artists and old pals.
Starting out the evening was DJ Zo, getting the crowd riled. He set the tone of the night with YG’s “FDT”. Hiphop duo ‘Year of the Ox’, also based out of LA., opened next with a tight set. Some of the crowd were only just getting acquainted with ‘YOX’, comprised of skilled wordsmiths Lyricks and JL. Spitting fast deadly lines was clearly their specialty, as the crowd roared with approval through “Check 2 Check” and “Strictly for the Lees”. They ended their set with the feisty “Seven Rings”, waxing poetic on being underestimated and following dreams.
Dumbfoundead’s ‘We Might Die’ mixtape was released earlier this year to accolades. Featuring collaborations with the likes of Jay Park, Kohh, and Simon D, Dumb’s darkly witty tracks anchor a solid album. The themes of desperation and American doom are undeniable on the title song, “We Might Die”. “They copping pistols, apocalypto, I just want you to take that off… if they pull us over they can’t hold us, we’ll **** in front of that racist cop”. Somehow Dumb finds a way to see the glass half-full.
His set was peppered with political commentary that resonated with fans but didn’t dampen the mood at Mod Club that night. Dumb’s gained notable attention in the past year for his on-the-nose satirical MVs, touching on everything from whitewashing in Hollywood to police shootings. His recent forays into political commentary have brought him a new legion of fans, appreciative of his narrative flow. Katy Perry, self-proclaimed creator of ‘purposeful pop’, should take a page from Dumbfoundead’s book.
Alongside his new singles like “Banned in the Motherland” and “All In”, Dumb performed old gems like “Gold to My City”. He really tore into the night with “K.B.B.”, short for ‘Rock, Paper, Scissors’ in Korean. Donald Trump did not remain the elephant in the room, as his influence on the rapper-songwriter were so glaringly apparent in his most recent songs. “America is going through some **** right now. The news is like my favourite TV show. That **** is looking like ‘Flavor of Love’ right now! Trudeau is true, doe. Trump screws up and he does something amazing.. saves kittens from burning houses or something. He’s the rebound guy.”
Near the end of his set, Dumb brought out Toronto rapper Pryde and Year of the Ox for a few raucous final songs. “We gonna summon our ancestors tonite,” he hollered as the crew performed “G Ancestors”. There was also a nasty mashup of “It G Ma” and Rich Chigga’s “Dat Stick”. The night ended with twenty or so people crashing the stage as Dumbfoundead gave support to friend and collaborator Anderson .Paak, “He’s up for a Grammy tomorrow night!” Dumbfoundead deserves respect for sharing the spotlight and supporting fellow artists. The whole crew, Dumb included, hung back after the show to meet all the fans. Not all artists can attest to being that accessible. His show comes at a time of uncertainty and social ills, as a new political system bears down. Dumbfoundead’s defiant cheekiness makes it more palatable to spit out this bitter pill we’ve been dealt.
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