The day after Don Toliver’s sold out London show, my Instagram was full of IG stories from people in attendance, proving it to be one for the books. The trap-R&B Cactus Jack signee dropped his third studio album, Love Sick earlier this year and brought his infectious melodies to life on tour, lighting up Wembley’s OVO Arena.
Here’s all the elements of the show that made it a night to remember:
innovative flashing lights and fireworks
Arena shows are no stranger to fireworks and flashing lights, but the way Don Toliver executed these theatrics was something special. The lights would flash and build up suspense in the lead up to the beat drop, and the fireworks would shoot up into the air once the beat dropped, followed by clouds of smoke. A great example of this was on ‘WHAT TO DO’. On opener ‘Private Landing’, the beat’s intro provided the suspense before the fireworks exploded, marking the start of the show.
Moshpits were continuous throughout this show as the crowd made use of OVO Arena’s massive pit area. “We ain’t got this arena for nothin’, open it up!” Don exclaimed as four circles in the crowd began to get wider and wider, with his DJ encouraging the crowd to combine them. When the beat on ‘Smoke’ dropped, the crowd began to mosh in full force as fireworks erupted and strobe lights flashed at high-speed. And the crowd did it all over again when he returned to the stage for an encore and sang ‘Flocky Flocky’.
his classic hit singles
Don Toliver’s had some of the catchiest singles in music over the last few years, so naturally when he’d perform his hits the crowd’s energy would turn up a notch each time. He made sure to include tracks off of Cactus Jack compilation album, JACKBOYS, viral Internet Money collab ‘Lemonade’, ’Cardigan’, ‘No Idea’ and ‘After Party’ from his debut album Heaven or Hell, and Travis Scott collab ‘CAN’T SAY.
jersey club banger, ‘bus stop’
Among other Love Sick deep cuts, ‘Bus Stop’ was definitely the track that turned the crowd up the most off of his latest album. The unmistakable Jersey Club drum pattern pulsated through the speakers while the crowd bounced to the beat.
the aaliyah mashup
Don’s most popular song, ‘No Idea’ was already going off as he and the crowd sang that iconic refrain – “I’m picky with my women, I’m decidin’ / Call me to your crib and I’ma slide in.” When the chorus dropped, nostalgia hit as the beat smoothly transitioned to Aaliyah’s ‘One In A Million’, giving the 2019 smash hit an even sultrier vibe by combining it with the nostalgia of Aaliyah’s 90’s R&B classic, the mashup was originally created by producer Blue Nightmare.
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PHOTOGRAPHY: WILLEM VAN BREUGEL