The lineup all the way down the ¼ mile stretch that is Polson Street in the Portland’s area of Toronto meant someone special was hitting the stage at Rebel on this hot Sunday evening. The uber-talented, Platinum-selling singer/songwriter/producer Blackbear was bringing his “Dead 2 the World Tour” to town for a sold-out show that was creating a significant buzz with fans. It’s not hard to see why Blackbear has become so popular. With songwriter and producer credits on releases from some of the planet’s biggest superstars like Justin Bieber, G-Eazy, Machine Gun Kelly, Childish Gambino, and Linkin Park, just to name a few, this young phenom’s busting onto the stage himself is cementing him as the consummate all-around performer.
Hitting the stage on the second level of the industrial steel stage structure divided into three cubes, he wasted no time hitting the new material from his latest 2019 release Anonymous (purchase/stream here) with “Heartbroken.” Sporting a Palm Angels bucket hat and blue long-sleeve printed all over with pistols, Blackbear oozed his compelling lyrics into his red chrome mic as the fans hung on every word. Listening to Blackbear’s vocal style, song structure and delivery, he embodies all the other artists he has collaborated with. Or maybe vice versa. You can hear all those other artists in everything he does. Or again, vice versa. He has had that much influence.
And while he is an accomplished vocalist, he showed us his chops on a full-sized coffin that housed a piano during “NYLA” and acoustic guitar on “Idfc,” jamming with his backing band duo. It was a loud and raucous show with the Blackbear giving the fans all he had. As the line up of artists wanting to work with him gets longer and longer. Rapper Yung Pinch got the show going with his infectious beats and stage presence. And electropop singer/DJ Elohim continued with her centre stage electronic rig and haunting soulful vocals.
Peep the recent video for Blackbear’s “HIGH1X” here:
Released on April 26th, 2019, check the cover artwork for ANONYMOUS: