Live Report: Digga D – Royal Albert Hall, London

A moment in history for the drill figure...

The Autumn season is annually rife with live shows, and this year has continued the tradition. Digga D’s Royal Albert Hall show is one of the most fiercely anticipated, the West London-bred rapper making history as the youngest ever musician to headline the illustrious venue. 

A broad spectrum of fans made their way down to South Kensington venue, ushered in with the sounds of Kenny Allstar. The renowned DJ is a key figure in UK rap culture, his early championing of Digga D becomes a full circle moment as he energises the crowd. Ground-swelling cheers travel throughout the building as he delivers cuts of some CGM’s breakout hits.  

Kicking off with 2019 cult favourite ‘Who’ alongside Sav’O, Digga D moves into the (infamously) Zac Efron championed hit ‘No Diet’. The song is then halted as blue and red lights beam through the hall, with police accessing the stage to ‘arrest’ him – at this point we are introduced to the story-telling element of his show production. It’s a narrative that follows the real-life timeline of his big moments, and how they were cut short because of recalls. 

In true Digga fashion, hard-hitting renditions of his catalogue are joined by moments of cheekiness. Nodding to his feud with Loski ahead of performing ‘Prison Freestyle’ is one, and a live delivery of his Daily Duppy invokes awe-inspiring looks as Digga dons a levitating platform, the stage covered in smoke. 

Dancers flood the stage for his dancehall infused tracks, his versatility holding up live. Next the first of two guests of the night join Digga D on stage, the atmosphere jumpy as he and ArrDee belt ‘Wasted’. The dancers reappear for added elements of ‘Red Light Green Light’, his friends later joining for the next high energy string of songs – ‘Pump 101’ notably receives roars. 

The drill heavyweight next dives in to picks from the new tape, mellowing the vibe for ‘Fighting For My Soul’ and ‘TLC’. Buzzing upcomer Strandz joins him for a welcomed showcase of ‘Us Against The World’ before Digga starts to close. Viral sensation ‘Energy’ and ultimately ‘Woi’ spur on excitement, the lyrics excitingly fed back to him by the crowd. 

The aim of the night tis ultimately to bring us on the journey that got Digga D to this monumental show. It’s a huge accomplishment for the 23-year-old and a first for drill at the Royal Albert Hall – not many artists in his space attempt the production level he did in spite of the unfortunate difficulties. Regardless, the genuine adoration from his fanbase shone, reminded throughout of his string of street classics; he is undeniably a leader in the drill space.

Words: Shanté Collier-McDermott
Photography: Alex J Piper

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