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JUICY J at the Guvernment, Friday, March 29. Rating: NNN
Two decades after he founded the Oscar-winning Memphis group Three 6 Mafia, rapper/producer Juicy J has orchestrated a classic mid-career reinvention. Now affiliated with Wiz Khalifa's Taylor Gang imprint, the 37-year-old has released several solo mixtapes, scored a hit with strip club anthem Bandz A Make Her Dance and collaborated with The Weeknd, Rihanna and Passion Pit.
Ostensibly, his ‘trippy' M.O. is all about getting fucked up. It quickly became apparent while watching him perform that he is anything but: Juicy is an energetic pro who raps with a gruff and forceful clarity. His audience, on the other hand, has clearly bought into the ‘stay trippy' branding. The overwhelming strain blowing through this crowd was a mellow one, and although the laconic vibe seemed to exasperate the hypemen opening the show, Juicy made it look easy.
Flanked by two security guards that kept a gaggle of cellphone-wielding ladies in check, he delivered his well-polished set of hook-y club bangers with a bemused smile on his face, proving that it's not so hard to stay turnt up even when everyone is on downers.