Michael Phelps recently cited Young Jeezy as an inspiration for snagging those eight gold medals, which pretty much makes the Atlanta rapper the new Vangelis. At his sold-out Blender Theater show last night, Jeezy skipped Phelps favorite “Go Getta,” but still brought the chariots of fire. He took the stage in a tight leather vest emblazoned with a Harley Davidson–style logo advertising his new disc, The Recession. (The flagging economy has apparently forced Jeezy to repurpose wardrobe items from Wild Hogs.) But he quickly ditched that, presumably to better rip through his back catalogue in that half-rapper, half-garbage-disposal voice. You don't win medals with his kind of flow, but it's still a workout, so Jeezy paced himself, roaring the first half of his couplets on “Go Crazy” and “Trap Star” and letting the crowd finish them off.
Then came the cameos: Fabolous on “Breathe” (big cheers), Lil’ Kim on “Lighters Up” (bigger). “I told y'all niggas I was connected,” Jeezy boasted after the Queen Bee trotted off stage. “I might bring bin Laden out!” Instead, he brought out Maino, the Brooklyn MC whose ubiquitous summer hit “Hi Hater” is probably stuck in Osama's head. Selections from the new disc came toward the end of the hour-long set; L.A. Reid could be spotted in the back, nodding his approval. Brash and hoarse, Jeezy gave his timely assessment of the race for the White House with “My President”: “I say, and I quote, we need a miracle / And I say a miracle 'cause this shit is hysterical!” Inspiring stuff.