Concert review: Brother Ali’s ‘Home Away From Home Tour’ comes to Social

Chloe Lomelli / Valencia Voice

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Brother Ali at The Social, in Orlando, Florida on Monday, Oct. 20, 2014. ( Chloe Lomelli / Valencia Voice)

Fans had high expectations Monday night as Minnesota MC Brother Ali made his way to Orlando for his “Home Away From Home Tour” at The Social. He was joined by opener Bambu DePistola, an equally politically conscious Los Angeles MC, and his DJ Last Word.

Ali’s stage presence filled the venue allowing for an intimate experience for all those in attendance. The MC had a great deal of passion behind his lyrics and did not hesitate to interact with the crowd. Actions like these permitted the show to surpass the bar fans had set for the night, and to make the night even better. The rapper even stayed after the show to talk and take pictures with supporters.

The hip-hop artist has not released an album in two years. “You’re not supposed to tour if you haven’t had a new album,” said Ali. But this did not stop him. He wanted to show people that his record label, Rhymesayers, could put out classic artists regardless of how long it has been since new albums have dropped. He also wanted to create a sense of “togetherness” within communities.

Ali rocked the venue and gave a heartfelt performance; with his political bluntness, he was able to send messages about racism, self-acceptance and coming together to change and better communities. He performed songs from various albums and did favorites like “Uncle Sam Goddamn,” “Forest Whitiker” and “Take Me Home.” He also performed “Mourning in America,” which is a song off his latest album “Mourning in America and Dreaming in Color,” which came out in 2012.

In addition to Ali’s deeper messages on empowerment and togetherness, he also had a recurring theme of love — Love not only for hip-hop or for one another, but love for the self.

To end the night, he performed an encore with Bambu and his show host Mally. The audience was attentive and showed gratitude for the MCs.

“I went on tour for nights like this,” said Ali. “Tonight is my favorite night of the whole tour,” he would conclude before thanking everyone on the production team and leaving the audience satisfied.

Brother Ali at The Social, in Orlando, Florida on Monday, Oct. 20, 2014. ( Chloe Lomelli / Valencia Voice)
Brother Ali at The Social, in Orlando, Florida on Monday, Oct. 20, 2014. ( Chloe Lomelli / Valencia Voice)