Posts tagged Hiphop
Posts tagged Hiphop
Local emcee Dlinkwnt recently launched his new single “hindsight” at Dicey Rileys with the help of Sydney’s Black Magic and Wollongong’s N2W and Elemont. I managed to get to down to the show, and for everyone with nothing better to do, here’s what I thought.
First things first… I got there late and only caught about 10 minutes of Elemonts set. Which was a shame, because he is one of my favourite local rappers. There are a bunch of new faces on the scene and Elemont is no doubt the pick of them. He has some deadly skills on the mic and his flow is better than most. And from what I saw on Friday night, his live show is improving too. He is relatively new to the stage and he has a lot of improving to do if he wants to realise his potential. But he is headed in the right direction, and if he works hard on his live show then he has a big BIG future ahead of him.
Up next were N2W. These guys are new to the area (I think, or at least I haven’t seen them before) so I was keen to check out their skills. They were ok, but were outclassed by most of the acts on the night. The DJ is good and the emcee is entertaining enough, but he has an awkward flow that seems slightly out of sync with the beat. Some bars seem to be short a few words and are stretched out to fit the beat or, vice versa, to many words crammed into a bar. But as I said, it was still entertaining, and it probably didn’t help going after Elemont - the kid with the flawless flow.
Black Magic were down, fresh off the back of a tour with the Funkoars, and it shows. Drakezilla (the red headed emcee) is dope. I have followed him for years. He didn’t disappoint with his live show either. They were tight and he has a sharp, aggressive, foul mouthed style that I like… BUT, he sounds SO much like Trials from the Funkoars that I couldn’t decide if I liked it or not.
At about midnight, Dlinkwnt hit the stage with his live band. I’ve seen Dlinkwnt perform in Wollongong for years, mainly as part of Equal Elements and more recently solo, but never with a live band. So I was interested to see how he would go… I thought the set was really good. Dlinkwnt is a really good live emcee. His voice is strong and you can understand what he is saying (which is more than what you can say about most emcees) and the live band adds to the show.
I reviewed his new single recently and I said that the heads wont like it because it isn’t a hip hop track. Its more of a rock track with raps. And the same goes for the live show. The band are good, but they are not playing hip hop music. Hip hop comes from soul, blues and funk music. It never has and never will come from rock music (don’t mention the cypress hill rock album) and that’s what probably brings down the show in my opinion. At one point though, with a few added horns, it all came together, it sounded like hip hop and it was really impressive. If they could pack that vibe into the whole set, then I’d pay to go watch them.
I don’t want to sound negative, because I thought the show was dope. But there was one thing that stood out for me. Dlinkwnt is a dope emcee, but he seems to be a bit lost in the band. An emcee is meant to be the front man. Look at all the dope acts playing with bands, Drapht, Downsyde, Seth Sentry and even Kade MC on a local level… The emcee/s feeds off the band but they are the highlight of the show and the band are meant to add to that. Not detract from it. I think at times, Dlinkwnt didn’t know how to be the front man. So while the band adds something to the stage, I don’t know whether Dlinkwnt can be the front man or not. I hope he can, because he has some talent in the band and some potential to make good music (even if its not hip hop).
All in all it was a good night and another reason to be excited about what the future holds for hip hop in Wollongong. There is not much happening in June, but get out and support local hip hop… and keep your eye out for young Elemont. He has a huge future ahead of him if he works hard.
Word from the steel city!
This Friday night, local emcee Dlinkwnt will be at Dicey Rileys with his live band and a bunch of dope support acts including Sydney crew Black Magic and local cats N2W and Elemont. Dlinkwnt will be launching his new single Hindsight and I caught up with him to find out about the single, whats going down at the launch and what it was like playing alongside the one and only Ice Cube.
Let me start by saying, I really like the single. Its a good song… without being great. The chorus is thumpin’. It’s catchy and it got my head noddin’, but I think the verses let the song down a bit. The flow is good, but the verses just dont really go anywhere. The second verse tried to build into something but the lyrics let it down in my humble opinion. I love songs with dope chorus’, and in other genre’s a dope chorus is enough to carry a song. But in hip hop, a song needs to be dope without the chorus. The verse should be enough to carry the song. At the end of the day, the verses on this track are good.. But just not good enough to carry the song. Its still a dope song though.
Music wise, I like it. I don’t think the hip hop heads will like it because it sounds nothing like a hip hop song. But its tight and its played well. The only bit I don’t like is the keys over the bridge. They sound like they belong in a horror movie, not a hip hop track and they just take away from the vocal. I probably would have backed off the drums in the bridge too, just to give the vocal more prominence. All in all though, the song got stuck in my head and that’s always a good sign.
Its been a big couple of months for Dlinkwnt. He took out the band comp at Dicey Rileys, supported Ice Cube in Canberra, been getting played on local radio and now he’s releasing his new single on Friday night.
Here’s what Dlinkwnt had to say…
This Friday night, Sydney’s True Vibenation are at the Beach Bar with support from Common Grounds, Mass Effect and Elemont. True Vibenations are and AMAZING live band, and you would have to be crazy to miss this gig.
Here is the Facebook event - http://www.facebook.com/events/291388834282622/
And here is what it is going down (taken from the facebook page):
True Vibenation + Common Grounds + Mass Effect + Elemont + Open Mic @ the Novetel Beach Bar on Friday 18 May!
True Vibenation goes beyond the live hip hop format of two
turntables and a microphone for a show that sees them transform
into a blasting horn section and live beatmaking band.
The trio has been going from strength to strength since the
release of their debut album ‘The Sunshower Phenomenon’
through Big Village Records in late 2011 and is now ready to
embark on their first east coast tour over April/May/June.
The album was named as the Triple J Hip Hop Show’s ‘album of
the week’, the afro-beat inspired single ‘No More feat, Rashaan
Ahmad & Chris Gudu’ was snapped up for rotation by Triple J
over Summer as well as receiving solid airplay on local radio stations
such as FBI, RTR and 3RRR.
On the back of the album’s release and reputation for their infectious energy on stage True Vibenation sold out their album launch at iconic Sydney venue the Annandale Hotel in January.
With their diverse sound, natural stage presence and attention grabbing show audiences are in for a taste of a group really starting to come into their own with a growing buzz and fan base.
A few shows happening in May. If you know of any more gigs going down in Wollongong then let me know and I’ll put them up.
May 11 – Kerser + Skeamo and Rates + Cass Clay @ The Patch
May 18 – True Vibenation + Common Grounds + Mass Effect + Elemont @ The Beach Bar
May 25 – Dlinkwnt + Black Magic + N2W + Elemont @ Dicey Riley’s
Welcome to the Steel City Hip-Hop Blog!
What’s the deal? Basically I’ve been kicking around the Wollongong hip hop scene for a little minute now and have seen crews, venues and a heap of trends come and go. I’ve been to almost every hip hop show in the gong for the last 10 years and seen the good, the bad and the sometimes very bad. But what can I say… I love hip hop and I love the steel city.
So this is my way of (hopefully) supporting the scene that has supported my drinking habits for the last 10 or so years.
What’s the plan for the blog? Heaps of stuff… well maybe not heaps, but enough to keep you informed and entertained. First and foremost the plan is to keep people up to date with what’s happening in the gong. Who’s playing shows, who’s releasing new music and all that sort of ish. You dig?
On top of that though, I want to review shows and releases, do interviews with local and touring artists, do opinion pieces and basically try and give the local hip hop scene the exposure it deserves.
There are a handful of similar pages kicking around which claim to support/represent the whole Wollongong music scene like Radar Illawarra and Helter Smelter etc… But the hip hop shows generally can’t even get a mention in the gig guide let alone any decent representation/exposure…
I’ve got nothing against these sites, I think they are trying to do a really good thing for live music in Wollongong! But… call it what it is! If you want to pick and choose genre’s or certain bands to represent than that’s fine. Just don’t claim to represent the whole live music scene.
So in that light… Welcome to the Steel City Hip-Hop Blog! A blog dedicated to hip hop in and around the gong!
No doubt everyone has an opinion on the state of the local scene. And as you probably guessed I do too…
Right now there are more acts kicking around the gong than ever before… Way more. I’ve never seen it like this before. Its good to see! As you can imagine, more acts means more good acts (hopefully) and more not so good acts… And that’s a good thing. Everyone has got to start somewhere and the bottom feeders at the moment may develop into the bigger and better acts in years to come… So keep working ‘till you move up to the top!
And more good acts… yep! There are more good acts now then there has been over the last 10 years without a doubt.
With the exception of maybe Free Agent Crew, now is the first time I have thought that a Wollongong act could make it! there are a bunch of cats making a name for themselves in their own right… in no particular order, here are some of the guys making waves:
Crimziko aka Cass Clay
And probably a heap more that I cant remember.
Ok.. so you know the deal. I’ll try and give my honest opinion on things, and you just tune in. Feel free to comment or reply on whatever you want…
Also, if you are playing gigs, or releasing music that you want me to know about… then let me know.
Tomorrow night Big Village act Daily Meds are launching their new album Happy Daze at the Novatel Beach Bar! Joining them on the night are local acts Common Grounds, Rekollect and Kade MC plus up and coming Sydney crew High Noon. I’m going to be there to check it out and probably do a little review for ya’s… depending on how much I drink of course.
Its being put on by the KnoHow Music crew so it will have all the usual ish like open mic and DJ’s and all that! So for all you aspiring MC’s and DJ’s, or just the heads, get down and support these nights so hip hop can continue to grow in the steel city!
Props to the KnoHow guys for doing ish the right way. These guys are going out of their way to bring good hip hop to Wollongong and to give up and comers a go… so hats off to them!
So you know the deal! Get to the beach bar tomorrow night for the show.
Ok… this is what it is. It’s a list of all of the hip hop shows that I know about that are going down in or around the gong. So, if you know whats going down, then let me know and I’ll put it up! Also, I’ll try and put up any show that includes a Wollongong act, no matter where it is. So here goes. Local acts in bold!
April 4 – The Herd + Thundamentals + Allotta Presha @ Wollongong Uni Bar
April 13 – Daily Meds + Common Grounds + Rekollect + Kade MC + High Noon + Open Mic @ Beach Bar Novatel
April 14 – True Vibenation + Elemont @ Hotel Gearin – Katoomba
April 19 – Ice Cube + Dlinkwnt @ AIS Arena – Canberra
April 27 - Kade and the Karnees album launch + the Phonies + Anecdote + Deadbeat and Hazey + Common Grounds
May 11 – Kerser + Skeamo and Rates @ The Patch
May 18 – True Vibenation + Common Grounds + Mass Effect + Elemont
There you have it.
This was one of those shows that could have gone either way for me. I’ve seen both Pez and crochet crooks put on killer live shows before, but I have also seen both acts put in half assed, sub par efforts too. So I was keen to see how the night panned out and hopeful that I would see Pez at his best!
But… I’ll start with the local boy Cass Clay aka Crimziko. Hmmm… I still don’t know about young Cass Clay. The kid can rap… But he has a lot to learn if he is going to win me, and I’m guessing most people, over. I think his biggest problem is he takes himself way to seriously. It’s off putting how much he believes in himself. I think a little humility would go a long way to fixing up his live show.
But anyway… It was pretty much a standard set for Cass Clay. A few good tracks mixed in with a handful of bad ones, mixed in with a mountain of cringeworthy moments. And yeah, the usual calling the crowd c*nts… You know, standard.
Crochet crooks made the stroll down the highway from Sydney and didn’t disappoint. But the reason we were all there was to see Pez…
There is no doubt Pez is a dope emcee. He’s got flow for days. But his live show has always been hit and miss. I’ve seen Pez live a handful of times and the last few have been a bit of a disappointment. He has seemed awkward on stage, almost intimidated by the crowd. But this time the old Pez was back. A live band is exactly what the doctor ordered for Pez. For the first time in ages he seemed to be enjoying himself on stage. The band were killing it and he was feeding off their energy and the crowd were lapping it up. He threw in some new jams, some old ones and even the festival song for those who were there to see the only song they knew… Long story short. He murked it! And I was stoked to see such a dope emcee back to his best.
Melbourne emcee Pez hits the gong tonight!
He’s playing at waves with crochet crooks (don’t quote me on the spelling) and local act Cass Clay aka Crimziko.
It should be a good night. So come down and support hip hop in Wollongong!
I’ll put up a proper gig guide in the next coupla. So stay tuned. And I might even put up a lil’ review of tonights show.