Gig review: J. Cole at O2 Academy Leeds

J. Cole
J. Cole
Have your say

Stateside J. Cole has had two number one albums on the Billboard 200 chart. The second, ‘Born Sinner’, was only released earlier this year, and now he’s here as part of his ‘What Dreams May Come’ tour.

When Tim Westwood did his DJ set, he got a great reaction from the crowd and got people dancing to a variety of tunes. Paying homage to the greats as well as playing tracks from contemporary. A little moving, and a great way to start the night.

Bas was picked by J. Cole himself to tour with him. From his sound to his on stage persona, something about him just seems like he’s an artist you should know about. For an upcoming rapper, he had a good rapport with the crowd and someone to keep an eye out for.

The build up for J. Cole’s entrance was epic. The backdrop looked amazing, and there was a feeling that we were about to witness something special. His sound really comes across well live, the tracks sound grandiose, and the hooks just that more inviting to sing along to.

There were many highlights, one being ‘She Knows’ which, apart from just being a great track, had a lightshow the likes of which I’d never seen before at a gig. We were even treated to a little humour during the set, with a live skit.

Afterwards J. Cole took a seat and the set became more intimate. The lyrics seemed more than ever like an expression of what was going on in his head.

Towards the end, he stopped the set for five minutes to take requests from the crowd, it led to ‘Let Nas Down’ and ‘Who Dat’ being played.

At the end of the night J. Cole solidified his position as a live artist that must be seen.

Gig date: December 5

The Orielles. Picture: Neelam Khan Vela

Music interview – The Orielles: ‘We’re really interested in bands that blend indie with dance’