Drake, Migos, and Roy Woods at Rogers Arena, 11/3/18
Drake and Migos’ Aubrey and the Three Amigos Tour has been mired in postponements and cancellations. Saint Paul, Salt Lake City, Denver, and Miami have all missed out. The tour began two weeks late, after it had been pushed back twice. The reasons were, invariably, production issues and illness. But last night (Nov. 3), at the first of back-to-back shows at Rogers Arena, everyone looked healthy, they figured things out, and what a production it was.
Drake brought along a couple of roster members from his record label, OVO Sound. On a stage set up in the middle of the arena, Roy Woods warmed up the crowd. Most of his songs hovered around a mid-tempo. He sang and rapped but leaned into rapping on tracks including “Russian Cream.” He kept the energy going with help from labelmate Baka Not Nice, who joined him for “Live Up to My Name” and more.
Migos cancelled their headlining set at the first-ever Breakout Festival in Vancouver this past summer. They also cancelled their set in Seattle three nights ago due to a family emergency. Expectedly, this racked Vancouver fans with concern ahead of last night’s show. But fans here finally got to “Whoop!” until their voices were hoarse.
Migos weren’t the main event, but they brought plenty of pyro. In fact, their set began with an explosion of sparks and flames before the Atlanta trio dove headfirst into fan favourites including “Handsome and Wealthy,” a snippet of “Pipe It Up,” “Slippery,” and “T-Shirt.”
Like Drake’s latest album, this past summer’s Scorpion, he divided his set into a rap-heavy A Side and a smoother B Side filled with pop/R&B. He started off as hot as the visuals of molten earth that bubbled beneath his feet with “Mob Ties” and continued with “Jumpman,” “Know Yourself,” “Can’t Take a Joke,” and “Free Smoke.” “Emotionless,” on which he samples Mariah Carey’s “Emotions,” came as an early slow jam in the night, complete with her powerhouse vocals on the chorus.
Staying true to the tour’s name, Migos joined Drake for their collaboration, “Walk It Talk It.” He walked offstage for a breather while Migos once again had the stage to themselves for “Bad and Boujee” and “Stir Fry.”
The B Side portion of the night commenced with “That’s How You Feel,” “Don’t Matter to Me,” and more. But it wasn’t all mood pieces from here on. Drake turned things back up with “Controlla,” the Caribbean-influenced “One Dance,” and megahit “Hotline Bling.”
Drake’s visuals were amongst the most extravagant today. They included 3D projections, enough smog to completely obscure the stage, lights that blinked in and out of the air and circled like fireflies, and loads of fireworks. Most ‘Grammed and Snapped of all, though, was the yellow Ferrari that was hoisted through the air during “Energy” and came within feet of fans’ heads when it was lowered back to the ground.
Drake didn’t stop flaunting his money after the aerial luxury sports car: Laser lights inscribed the outline of a basketball court on the stage. A fan was invited to shoot hoops for cash. He sank his first free-throw, for $250, but he missed a half-court shot that would have bagged him $25K.
All parties turn down, and Drake closed Saturday night with tracks he featured on (“Look Alive” by BlocBoy JB and Travis Scott’s “Sicko Mode”) and finally, the knockout combo of “I’m Upset” and “God’s Plan.” Tonight, Aubrey and the Three Amigos do it all again at Rogers Arena.