When: Jan. 11-13 2016
WAKA FLOCKA FLAME
MONDAY, JAN. 11–WEDNESDAY, JAN. 13
CAT'S CRADLE, CARRBORO—Why does Waka Flocka Flame need three nights in a row—in relatively quiet Carrboro, of all places—to fire off insolently birdbrained Brick Squad chants? It's anyone's guess, especially since he appeared on a Raleigh stage in June, but the string of shows offers a triple opportunity for self-respecting women to hop on stage to stack on top of each other like cheerleaders in Flocka's signature "pyramid of moisture." He erected that same piece of feminine architecture at Raleigh's Lincoln Theatre. His extended stay should also give Flocka's more career-driven fanbros the chance to audition to be his personal blunt roller, another position he advertised in June. At that show, he was a pantomiming party maniac who treated his hits ("Rooster in My Rari," " No Hands," "Hard in the Paint") more as adrenaline shots than actual songs.
If that's why you love Flocka, fine, but maybe you too have started to wonder if he's trying to leave that party image behind just a little bit. He abandoned his shtick, for instance, for the recent dis "Ask Charlamagne," which borrows the "Donkey of the Day" theme from the just-as-birdbrained Power 105 The Breakfast Club radio host Charlamagne Tha God. Flocka manages to piece together nearly two minutes of coherent rap barbs, setting what may be a new personal record. He aims at no rapper in particular as well as every rapper at once: "Y'all be on some foolish shit/stupid does, stupid is/rappers always stupidest," he points out, more subdued and succinct than usual. In recent interviews, including the one with The Breakfast Club, he's expressed a heightened sense of purpose, industry acumen and social awareness, as if he's tired of being looked at as the stupid one with nothing to offer but tons of turn-up. Now he tweets in Zen koans instead of loud rap parlance. Perhaps he's transforming into a real-life Flocakaveli right before our eyes. 9 p.m. (Monday & Tuesday), 8 p.m. (Wednesday), $20–$25, 300 E. Main St., Carrboro, 919-967-9053, www.catscradle.com. —Eric Tullis