Wiz Khalifa made his way back to Hollywood Casino Amphitheatre Thursday night for his Decent Exposure Tour featuring fellow Taylor Gang member Chevy Woods as well as DJ Drama, Moneybagg Yo and French Montana. Khalifa has been to St. Louis several times since he burst on the scene. And seems to bring a different show with him each time. There was the star- making energy he brought to the Old Rock House back 2019. Then there was the laid back intimate smoke session he brought to The Pageant this past February with Curren$y. He’s been to Holl winter to his handful of arena shows – his most recent visit to the Hollywood Casino Amphitheatre being the 2016 “High Road” tag team tour with Snoop Dogg.
He presented St. Louis fans with their first live look at his newly toned physique, but otherwise he was in classic form with his fun, energetic show that shamelessly promotes marijuana and a good time.
His fan favorite “Young, Wild and Free” is the best way to describe his headlining contribution to the Decent Exposure Tour – which gave Hollywood Casino Amphitheatre an overcast of weed smoke.
He kicked things off with “King of Everything,” the title track from his 2015 album. It set the tone – and it absolutely applied to his showing when compared to other acts on the lineup.
“On My Level,” “Black and Yellow,” Work Hard, Play Hard” and “We Dem Boys” were played early on in his hour-plus performance and set the tone of a high energy good time. Khalifa genuinely enjoys himself on stage and a huge smile never left his face as he worked both sides of the huge stage with ease. He bopped around like a heartthrob for his love song “Roll Up.” He spit lyrics with staccato and intensity during “Taylor Gang.” His latest show was an illustration of his fearlessness with respect to trying new sounds and showcasing the variety within the genre of hip-hop – and its influences on other genres.
It was only natural that Khalifa perform a snippet of the hottest record on the charts right now – the country track “Old Town Road” by rapper Lil Nas X. The crowd sang along to every word as Khalifa cued up the autotune to give his vocals more of a melody.
He’s carved out his own lane with fun, easygoing lyrics that feature him as the life of the party. And there is no shame in his game. “Last night I let the party get the best of me,” Khalifa rapped in “No Sleep.” “Wake up drunk, go to sleep [expletive] up,” he rapped in “The Thrill” before jumping into “Young, Wild and Free.”
His biggest hit however is “See You Again,” a touching tribute to lost loved ones from the “Furious 7: Original Motion Picture Soundtrack” that served as in memoriam to franchise’s late star Paul Walker.
At the concert she used the song to pay tribute to fallen rap stars Mack Miller and Nipsey Hussle. The song should have been the finale, but Khalifa and his Taylor Gang crew to perform “Gang Gang” as they scooted in unison across the stage.
Fellow Taylor Gang member Chevy Woods gave an impressive showing as the opener for Decent Exposure. Yo Gotti protégé Money Bagg Yo also fared well with a set that played better on a massive stage than expected. He usually plays St. Louis in smaller venues such as Pop’s and The Pageant. He developed a devoted St. Louis following by regular visits to local clubs.
DJ Drama was solid as pre-show entertainment and was committed to taking fans to the proper energy level to get the most from the show. He even made a trip to the lawn area to engage with the audience.
French Montana was the weakest link of the Decent Exposure tour. He came out strong with violinist, backup dancers and a pair of Uganda dancers. He relied mostly on features from other artists – G Eazy, Bobby Shmurda, Jay-Z, DMX and Montell Jordan.
The highlight of Montana’s set was a performance of his feature on Afro-B’s “Joanna.”