Image by: Jeremy Deputat
Concert Reviews

Concert Review: Eminem's Rapture Breaks Wellington Record

Where: Westpac Stadium, Wellington NZ
When: 02 Mar 2019
Melany Barrington

Returning after five years, Eminem played his last show of the Rapture Tour with producer and hype man Mr Porter. Performing songs from latest album Kamikaze and his all-time greatest hits for two hours to a sold-out stadium of 46,474 people. The pair quickly determined that it wasn’t a room full of fans but, family.

As surreal as it was to hear the Rap God himself, it wasn’t hard to see his humorous personality - the banter shared on stage when Eminem wanted to dedicate most songs to the ladies but instead we learnt that he wears Mr Porter's underwear on stage; the ladies did eventually have a song dedicated to them with River.

Between hits The Way I Am and Walk On Water, the crowd got to hear an instrumental from the supporting band and orchestra. Right before a guest appearance by artist Skylar Grey, who sung all songs featuring female vocals such as Walk On Water, Stan, Love The Way You Lie and The Monster.

Needless to say, Eminem shared the stage with many talented musicians. Bringing supporting act Royce Da 5’9, covering the single Caterpillar and Boy Meets Evil Fast Lane. Followed by support act Boogie, performing Rainy Days. The crowd may have recognized Aerosmith's Dream On in Sing For The Moment performed by the band and also a brief inclusion of Queen's We Will Rock You.


Eminem by Jeremy Deputat

Leading into the most iconic hits, Eminem shared his reckless lifestyle. It wasn’t explaining how far he had come or to encourage that a reckless lifestyle isn’t the right choice. Instead, it was a walk down memory lane to Slims' past with a medley of My Name Is, The Real Slim Shady and Without Me. However, acknowledging his artistic and personal growth as well as his influences - every night he performs to share how hip-hop impacted him through the lead single Not Afraid and the musicians he chooses to wear on his clothing... showing he’s come a long way from the spaghetti on his sweater. Ending the night with encore Lose Yourself, Eminem stated how he doesn’t like division but unity from every inch of the left to right side of the stage. The 46,474 people lost themselves in the music and unity... after all this opportunity only comes once in a lifetime.

Earlier on the same night, Australian hip hop group Hilltop Hoods gave a captivating performance with their unbounded energy. Supporting all Australia and New Zealand shows of the 2019 Rapture Tour, the trio performed hits that have topped the ARIA charts countless times. Opening their set with the collaboration of drums, turntablism and brass ensemble, intertwined the instruments creating a unique sound that enthralled the crowd. Followed by vocalists Suffa and Pressure appearing vigorously around the entire stage. Later, they featured artist Adrian Eagle to accompany the group with their single Clark Griswold from recent album The Great Expanse. Towards the end of their set, they stopped mid-song, encouraging the audience not to wave their hands side to side but to grab a piece of their clothing and wave it around in the air before continuing with their performance. Ending with their hit Cosby Sweater, the group left the sold-out house warmed up and enthrilliated before headliner Eminem.

With support from rapper/songwriter Royce Da 5’9 (Bad Meets Evil, Slaughterhouse, PRhyme and Shady Records) accompanied by Kid Vishis. Proud with his associated acts, Royce explained that he does not muck around with the microphone. Sharing his seven years in sobriety and encouragement to never let anyone project their feelings onto you - it wasn’t hard to connect with the artist. Dedicating A Sky Full of Lighters to the house. Being in the crowd, saying it made you feel valued was almost an understatement. Before closing his set, he established that the show would be historic... and it was!

Opening the night of rapture was Shady Records newest member, Boogie. From his underground mixtapes to his recent debut album, he’s a mesmerizing artist to see. As he is a talented creationist with a unique voice, I found his sound to be familiar with what I’ve seen in the local Wellington music scene. While he has worked with the likes of Eminem, 6LACK and J.I.D, Boogie showed that he was also a great artist performing solo. Performing songs from the latest album Everything's For Sale, especially his song Silent Ride, you begin to understand how his lyrics are deep and meaningful. Dedicating Nigga Needs to the late Mac Miller and Lil Peep. It was more than just a performance.

Eminem set-list:

  • Greatest
  • Won’t back down
  • 3 a.m
  • Square Dance
  • Kill You
  • White America
  • Rap God
  • Sing for the Moment
  • Like Toy Soldiers
  • Lucky You
  • Forever (Drake Cover)
  • Just Don’t Give a Fuck
  • Fall
  • Criminal
  • The Way I Am
  • Walk on Water (with Skylar Grey)
  • Stan (with Skylar Grey)
  • Love the Way You Lie (with Skylar Grey)
  • Majesty (Nicki Minaj cover)
  • Berzerk
  • ‘Till I Collapse
  • Cinderella Man
  • Caterpillar (Royce Da 5’9 cover/features)
  • Fast Lane (Boy Meets World cover/features)
  • Rainy Days (Boogie cover/features)
  • River
  • The Monster (with Skylar Grey)
  • My Name Is
  • The Real Slim Shady
  • Without Me
  • Not Afraid
  • Lose yourself (encore)


Written By: Melany Barrington