Review: Big Sean at Virgin Mobile FreeFest 2011

The Baltimore Sun

Big Sean is a work in progress.

The 23-year-old Detroit rapper, who released his debut LP Finally Famous on Kanye West's G.O.O.D. Music imprint, proved it during his 45-minute set at the West stage this afternoon, allowing lulls to outweigh his better moments.

He started off strong, with mixtape cuts "Supa Dupa Lemonade" and "What U Doin?" that got the receptive crowd into it. This is where Sean thrived -- encouraging the crowd to party and indulge over buoyant beats.

"If you partying, take a hit of whatever you got. You got that good weed? Hit it," he instructed as he sipped his lemonade cocktail. The crowd obliged as smoke filled the air.

But when he turned introspective, Sean noticeably lost momentum. He rambled through an endearing but lengthy story of his grandmother buying his first car, only to follow it up with slow album cuts "Memories (Part II)" and "Don't Tell Me You Love Me." Even worse, he stopped the show dead when he decided to take pictures with the front row for Twitter. If you weren't mugging for his iPhone next to the rapper, it felt like an appropriate time to check your own timeline or leave the area all together.

He finished his set with a one-two punch of radio hits -- "Marvin Gaye & Chardonnay" and "My Last." It was more proof Sean has hits, but just not enough to keep it interesting the entire time.

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