Lil B Pitchfork Review: A Strange Show That Just Worked

The rapper was charming enough to pull off his wacky solo performance of live hip-hop theatre.

Photo: Clayton Hauck

Ellen DeGeneres, Usher Raymond, Regis—these are just a few of the people Lil B—a.k.a Based God, a.ka. Brandon McCartney—referred to on stage in one of Pitchfork’s loopiest performances of the weekend.

It’s Based God’s modus operandi. The 23-year-old Californian has maintained a rabid cult following based on his nonsensical lyrics and vague do-goodery philosophy. (“Practice safe sex! Respect women!”)

The combination made for some intriguing live theatre as Based, wearing a long-sleeved floral shirt, took the stage alone, no hypemen, no DJs—nothing. (He rapped over beats delivered from somewhere offstage.) His charisma would have to keep the fans happy—and it certainly did. There were multiple back-flipping stage dives, strangely shaped balloons, a couple of people who, for reasons not entirely clear, had frying pan flippers.

People danced with abandon and Based encouraged it. His best moments were when he went off-script, though, to tell the crowd that he loved them even if they didn’t love him. Or to talk about how he was J.K. Rowling.  “I’m just the guy that changed music forever,” Lil B said.

You couldn’t tell whether he was joking or serious. But it didn’t seem to matter. 

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12 months ago
Posted by TaskForceLieutenant

Hi,
My name is William, I'm a representative of the Task Force. A highly devoted fan of Lil B "The BasedGod". I just wanted to inform you that the article that your magazine published in regards to Brandon's performance at the Pitchfork Festival this past weekend. There were several errors in the article that I wanted to point out to you so that you could have a more informative and correct article.

First of all BasedGod is one word, while a person can be based and many things may be described that way there is no person that is properly referred to as "Based". in fact the vague philosophy you note in the article is actually what we call being based. It's about enforcing the positive and non-judgemental and loving all humans and living beings as equal.

Secondly Lil B music is very serious to us. The words may not make sense at first but the message is very close to our hearts and Lil B has changed many people's lives including literally saving one of my closest friends lives. The thing is that we accept that it's the meaning behind the words and not the words that is important. It takes time to understand Based music, and I don't mean that to be condescending but the mindset of consuming based music is much different than that of normal music consumption and it's not one we are naturally in.

The spatulas are pretty easy to explain, Lil B invented what is known as the cooking dance and much of his fandom revolves around striving to become the best chefs that we can be and unlocking new moves. While the spatulas have nothing directly to do with the dance the "cheffing" aspect of Lil B has become a cornerstone of BasedWorld and it is not uncommon to see people dressed in toques at his shows or even in full chef uniform.

This may be the most confusing aspect of Brandon McCartney, that while he is Lil B "The BasedGod" Lil B and The BasedGod are not the same. Lil B is the rapper you saw perform at Pitchfork, The BasedGod is a perfect being that nobody but Brandon has met personally. The BasedGod is what we strive to be, an ideal non-judgemental being that loves the whole world and only strives to make it a better place.

I hope this is helpful and you will take this notes into account. I hope you're having a good day. Stay Based.

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