soundset festival 2012 macklemore

Soundset 2012 at Canterbury Park (Shakopee, MN) was nothing short of a whirlwind event, literally. Cut short by tornado warnings, swaying stages and frantic fans fleeing to their vehicles stationed out front, the day ended in as much excitement as it had begun. Due to these unexpected weather changes, it was a major disappointment for fans when they realized the only Atmosphere show they’d be viewing that evening was that of the dark green and grey sky followed by lightning, high winds, and hail. For the first time in Soundset’s five years of existence an artist other than Atmosphere closed out the night.

Check out our full gallery from Soundset Festival.

Throughout the day there were many noteworthy sets, but I’d say everyone in attendance would agree with the statement that Macklemore was the one not to have missed. Macklemore’s stage presence was unmatched as he sported a wig, majestically flowing cape, and even leapt into the crowd where he surfed around a bit. There was not a dull moment or mess up. Rocking a “Legalize Gay Marriage” tank, there was nothing ordinary about this man or his supporting musicians and vocalists. His individuality was something to remind people what hip hop is all about; bringing what you have to the table, owning it and inspiring others to find something in themselves that they can take pride in.

Soundset Macklemore

Overall the day was rather hit or miss with super incredible performances and not so great ones. Those who were able to also impress were PROF with DJ FUNDO – two incredibly entertaining dudes who know how to have a good time on stage courtesy of squirt guns and awesome charisma, and then Grieves & Budo – lots of love from the ladies for these guys in particular. Relatively entertaining performances from Danny Brown, I Self Devine and Kendrick Lamar held attention and were able to put on a good show.

Soundset Lupe Fiasco

Despite not being the planned finale, mister Fiasco gave an energy driven performance that could’ve easily fooled anyone into thinking he was the headliner. His off the charts energy had him spinning, jumping, grooving, and spraying fans with water as he flawlessly projected to 20,000+ fans. He never quite made it to his hit, “Superstar,” but that didn’t take away from his night whatsoever. The amount of crowd participation he was able to create was nothing short of incredible. Between him and the preceding acts, the crowd knew his lyrics more so than any other. It was truly unfortunate he wasn’t able to finish out his full set, but lesson learned, when Lupe prays for rain in front of thousands – Mother Nature will answer.

Soundset 2012


-Written and photographed by Kasey Noll

Lupe Fiasco – “Around My Way [Freedom Ain’t Free]”