By Joseph Hernandez

Tech N9ne, days after having the honor to perform the first act at Kansas City’s new theater The Truman, brought his “Strange Reign” tour to Columbia. The tour is promoting the upcoming album, “Strange Reign”, in his “Collabos” series.

Tech N9ne and Strange Music artist and right-hand man Krizz Kaliko rocked The Blue Note for over 90 minutes and had the crowd in the palm of their hands the entire time.

Tech, whose real name is Aaron Yates, moved around the stage at the young age of 45 like a prime Dante Hall returning a kick or a punt. Kaliko, or Samuel Watson, matched his partner’s intensity and mobility for a majority of their set. Even though Kaliko is a bit heavier than his co-performer, seeing him bounce around the stage at the rate he did was quite the sight to see.

As Tech is the owner of Strange Music, he shouted that he owned the number one independent music label in the world numerous times to the applause of the Columbia crowd. Given the loyalty of their fan base across the U.S. and even worldwide, it’s clear the phrase has some merit to it.

The Blue Note, being a small venue, meant that there wasn’t going to be any intricate light displays or fancy jumbotrons displaying big graphics throughout the performance. Instead, there were just some lights, speakers with the loudest bass ever and a backdrop showing the Strange Music logo.

For Tech and Kaliko, it was all they needed, as their stage presence and natural charisma was more than enough to keep the crowd of at least 500 rocking. Even a namedrop of former professional wrestler The Rock got the crowd excited when Tech announced that two of his songs would be in “WWE 2K18”, the latest video game in that series.

The energy was similar to Kendrick Lamar’s recent tour in the sense that they both didn’t need flashy things to keep the crowd engaged. It’s also interesting that their style is similar seeing that Lamar gave praise to Tech, Kaliko and Strange Music as a whole when he stopped in Kansas City for his “The DAMN Tour” in August.

The dynamic duo took time out of their set to banter with the crowd. The banter, which wasn’t exactly family friendly, led to paraphernalia and lighters being thrown on the stage by the fans as a token of appreciation for the performance.

For most of the set, they were on stage together performing songs from their backlog of over 15 years of releases and even some material that has only been posted in snippets on Tech’s Instagram page.

Kaliko even had the stage to himself for a few minutes. He took that opportunity to perform songs off his last album, “Go!”, which was a showcase for his singing ability. His songs were definitely strange compared to Tech’s hardcore style, but the crowd felt the vibes and were singing along with him. The same could be said for every song both he and Tech performed.

Tech and Kaliko go together like peanut butter and jelly, and their 28-song setlist proved that, as their chemistry was shining brighter than ever. If you are a fan of great live performances, then the next time Tech N9ne and the Strange Music family are in your area, it’s best that you go watch them do what they do best: entertain. Just make sure there isn’t any “molly powder” blowing through the arena or you might really lose it.

Setlist:

Straight Out The Gate*, Stamina, Sriracha, Anxiety*, Spaz*, Dysfunctional*, Riot Maker*, Einstein, KCMO Anthem, Godspeed, Who Do I Catch?, Breaking Into Colored Houses, No No’s**, Outta Line**, Talk Up On It**, He’s A Mental Giant*, Industry Is Punks*, Midwest Choppers*, Midwest Choppers 2*, Worldwide Choppers*, Speedom*, Kill S—*, E.B.A.H., Colorado*, Fragile*, Caribou Lou*, Hood Go Crazy*, KC Chiefs song***

No asterisk indicates songs only Tech N9ne performed

*indicates both Tech and Kaliko performed

**indicates only Kaliko performed

***indicates a song that has not been officially released

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