Twenty-three-year-old Memphis rapper Gloria “GloRilla” Hallelujah Woods caught lightning in a bottle for her 2022 crossover sensation “F.N.F (Let’s Go),” and she shows every sign of being able to do it again and again. Memphis producer Hitkidd combines nasty percussion with a simple, stentorian piano loop on “F.N.F,” and GloRilla makes the brooding, menacing instrumental sound like a party—her deep voice, southern swagger, and balled-up-fist verses hit with an energy that feels fun and joyful. “F.N.F” has lit up GloRilla’s path to stardom since it dropped last April, and last fall it earned her a Grammy nomination for Best Rap Performance. In July, she signed to CMG, the label run by Memphis rapper Yo Gotti, which partnered with Interscope to release her EP Anyways, Life’s Great . . . in November. She’s a blunt, forceful rapper who can clearly carry a full-length album, and she shines on the singles from the EP. On “Tomorrow 2,” a collaboration with Cardi B, GloRilla holds her own next to an established star. This is her second time playing Chicago this winter—in December, she performed at the United Center for the WGCI Big Jam, just a couple slots before headliner Moneybagg Yo (who teamed up with her for the meaty January single “On Wat U On”). GloRilla was originally scheduled to play Avondale Music Hall, but her show’s been moved to the the much larger Patio Theater, which holds 1,500 people—and the way she’s blowing up, I wouldn’t expect another chance to see her in a venue that size.
GloRilla Thu 2/16, 7 PM, Patio Theater, 6008 W. Irving Park, sold out, all ages