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Relive Lil B's Whartscape Set Via iTunes

Live In Baltimore 2010

, Bay Area experimental rapper Lil B's live set from the 2010 Whartscape festival, begins with the self-proclaimed "Based God" walking onstage shouting "swag" a whole bunch of times as M83's "Can't Stop" blasts from the speakers. It's actually pretty exhilarating--but it's all downhill from there. Most of the time, B isn't even rapping here, he's just shouting out the names of bloggers and other web media types, repeating the word "swag" over and over, and dispassionately rapping a line or two from the songs blasting behind him and moving on. The lack of energy is painfully clear when he waddles through a genuinely transcendent track like

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or half-asses "Vans," the hit from his group, the Pack. Imagine Lou Reed's

Take No Prisoners

, if Lou sang even less, was in an annoyingly good mood, and didn't know he was acting like a total shitbag. Here's the thing: Lil B can be really good. Though the cult around him is obnoxious in a

Rocky Horror Picture Show

way--shouting lines back at him, wearing costumes, creating insider catchphrases--he's a charmingly sincere rapper, a lover of things airy and electronic, a genuine music weirdo, and there aren't too many of them right now. Just look at the cover to this thing (a pigeon in a field of grass) for evidence that B is completely on his own. And check out songs like

or

off the way-too-long, way-too-awesome

Red Flame

mixtape for further proof. Last time I checked, Sound Garden still had vinyl copies of Lil B's ambient, spoken-word album

Rain In England

. Spend some money on that and leave

Live In Baltimore 2010

alone.

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