The queen has returned to the UK, and she’s brought her British accent with her. Forgoing Corgis for an enormous unicorn that carries her into her Manchester Arena show, Nicki Minaj kicks off her open performance with the track Majesty featuring Eminem and fellow Brit Labrinth. With a new album celebrating the female rappers’ power within an industry and avenue dominated by men, Minaj is back in the UK to show why she reigns supreme in the rap world.
In a live show that merges an assembly line of hits, her production is interrupted by guest performances that include homegrown talent and many costume changes. The glamorous and graphic stage show from the Trinian born rap artists lives up to the hype, framing the stage with an eye-catching multicoloured aesthetic, together with elaborate performances from Minaj and her five backing dancers.
The illuminated, confetti filled stadium complete with giant unicorn structure struck a chord with Manchester’s crowd who were all too ready for a sing-along after RnB supporting act Ray BLK had hyped up the masses. Playing her tracks Run Run, Got My Own and Hood from her debut album Empress, the British songwriter and winner of the BBC’s Sound of 2017 opened the tour with her own dazzling 30-minute set.
Having already launched into her European leg of her world tour, Minaj’s latest live show featuring Juice Wrld comes off the back of her anticipated fourth studio album, Queen. With performances that plucked tracks spanning her entire back catalogue, the Chun-Li heavy hitter was forced to harken back and unpack tracks from the We Are Young Money (2009) and Pink Friday (2010) albums, up until her present.
Dancing in heels and eventually lying in an enormous bed with her dancers bopping around her, the 36-year-old rapper continues to champion her girl power roots with hits ranging from Anaconda to the Beyoncé featured 2014 sensation, Feeling Myself. Bringing black British artists out in support, the rapper Lady Leshurr, Lisa Mercedez and Ms Banks mixed up the set with fantastic features including Leshurr’s Brush Your Teeth alongside a DJ mash-up of Stylo G’s track, Touch Down featuring Nicki.
The Nicki WRLD tour hits its audience with a barrage of exciting performances played out by a titan in the hip hop arena. In a show that worked on lifting all the queens in the game, Minaj stayed true to her album title. The spectacle in Manchester’s Arena elevated original and unsigned British artists, merging them with America’s celebrated staple for an eccentric show of classic hits.