Kevin Gates is on a long, steady roll. After years of performing and recording, the Louisiana-based rapper stands atop the hip-hop world with his recently released new album, “Islah,” entering the Billboard charts at No. 2. The album is a departure of sorts from his rough-and-tumble, mix-tape past. Named after his eldest daughter, “Islah” is more musical in scope without sacrificing the biting street wit and beat-laden wisdom that are the wordsmith’s trademarks. Tunes such as “2 Phones,” “Thought I Heard (Breadwinner’s Anthem)” and “Told Me” showcase elastic bounces and lyrical engagements that marry mainstream and underground sensibilities into catchy takes on life and love. Kevin Gates brings his chart-topping sound to the National on Tuesday, Feb. 23. Fellow Louisiana rappers Young Greatness and OG Boobie Black get the party started before Gates takes the stage. Doors open at 7 p.m. Admission is $27.50-$32.50. thenationalva.com.
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