Nicki Minaj: The Pinkprint Tour

Everything has been said before
There’s nothing left to say anymore

This month’s work was compressed into 2 days, although we were at it over the span of 4, about 45 hours in total.
The same job twice: Nicki Minaj in Amsterdam, Nicki Minaj in Brussels. And yes, I saw the show. From the crowd, from the sidelines, from watching the director control the video feed backstage.

And did I enjoy the show? Yes.
Because these shows are enjoyable. I described the stage setting as “ordinary” numerous times during load-in, but nowadays an ordinary show is generally a good one.

When it’s all the same
You can ask for it by name

I liked the video screens decorating the front of the risers, creating an overlap between vertical and horizontal surface with the musicians in between. They complimented and continued the huge LED screen in the back so that the whole stage followed the same theme, seeming larger than it actually was.
The numerous lateral stairs created diagonal slashes through the wall of light, further enhancing the impression left by the geometric structure of the stage.

Babble babble bitch bitch
Rebel rebel party party
Sex sex sex and don’t forget the “violence”

I liked the LED bars crisscrossing above, which did little to provide actual light but cleverly used, they added some motion and nice color patterns in what is usually just an ugly light grid. Again, the theme of the song was complimented and so, the set came full circle and enveloped Ms. Minaj in a complete, nicely detailed set. Compliments to the designers, they know their shit.

Blah blah blah got your lovey-dovey sad-and-lonely
Stick your stupid slogan and
Everybody sing along.

Personally, I would fire the sound guy for his abusive soundcheck alone. Maynard knows why but his idea of testing the system is to blast the pre-recorded songs out at about 150% volume. And because by then the sound isn’t properly tweaked, it cuts through your eardrums like a fucking knife.
At this point, I don’t even care if this method is in any way efficient: It’s destroying the hearing of your colleagues and yourself, all people whose ears figuratively bleed on a daily basis.

Also, if you must have your sub-woofers make up 50% of your PA, at least make them cardioid so the crew loading trucks in the back of the venue can stop vibrating and do their jobs.
I took the liberty of googling it for you because it would appear that you can’t use a computer, let alone a digital sound desk.

Are you motherfuckers ready
For the new shit?
Stand up and admit,
tomorrow’s never coming.

Nicki Minaj, for those of you living under a rock, is America’s newest inbred to hit the charts like yesterday’s lunch hits the water.
She is best known for her appearance: Short and stocky, with disproportionate boobs and ass. In profile, she looks somewhat like an ‘S’.

Now, I am not one to judge an artist on their appearance. The ugliest bastards often make the best music and the best shows, and yes this goes for women too. But there is a lesson to be learned here.

Do we get it? No.
Do we want it? Yeah.
This is the new shit,
Stand up and admit.

Pretty much everything about the phenomena “Nicki Minaj” is fabricated. Her songs are written by songwriters. Her make-up is done by make-up artists. Her appearance is created by surgeons and designers. Her very image, to the details, is thought up by people who get paid a lot of money for it.
This is how it works nowadays: Agents and companies look for someone with a minimum in talent and a strong drive to become -and stay- rich and famous. They then create an image with die rolls to calculate a 1-10 scale for character traits like intelligence, beauty, shock value, and so on. Nicki just happened to roll quite high on the ‘gay demographic’ chart and not so high on the ‘integrity’.

And now it’s “you know who”
I got the “you know what”
I stick it “you know where”
You know why, you don’t care.

And this is what would be left if you stripped Onika Maraj of her artificial image, invented by others: An empty husk, a girl with a nice voice and questionable tastes.

Nicki Minaj is a product. A puppet, and her fan base is a target audience, a demographic with money to spend. They buy, and the industry sells. They would sell us anything, but it just so happens that we enjoy originality and value. So they make it from scratch and sell it to us.

Are you motherfuckers ready
For the new shit?
Stand up and admit,
tomorrow’s never coming.

The concept ‘Nicki Minaj’ is an abomination.
Dirt, regurgitated from a dirty industry.
A money-making product, like a fancy car, something for children to look up to, and spend money on.

You might not see the real problem with this because yes, on the surface, this is no more than a heap of girls with confidence issues, deifying an icon onstage.
But where is the limit? I have plenty of examples about just what an immoral machine the music industry is, and they won’t stop in their quest for money. These children might think they are the righteous followers of their idol, but in reality they are the marionettes of a company.

This is the new shit.
Stand up and admit.
Do we get it? No.
Do we want it? Yeah.
This is the new shit,
Stand up and admit.

I’m sure, if I were to declare this opinion onstage, I would get more than a few threats on my life. I might even get them on the internet. But that’s okay, if you are part of this army, you clearly don’t live in a very realistic little world.

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