Wednesday, January 12, 2005

Jux...


I don't know what it is exactly about the indie/underground hip hop scene, but it's just kinda weird. I think it has to do with the fan base. It's white. About 90% of the people in attendance last night looked like me. And when the emcee tells you to throw your hands up, or initiates a call and response, they don't. They stand there and nod their head. And that just sucks. Hip hop by nature exudes tons of energy from the music, and a crowd that's not totally going along with it stands out even more than at a rock show. I mean, I've seen some of the most exciting bands in the world cut down by the nonchalant crowd at the Merc. But this seemed worse. Lemme just say, to anyone out there who may play a small show in New York...it's not that we don't love you, it’s just that we are all jaded, and while it's easy to impress us, it's just hard to get us to show it.

Anyway, last night me and my buddy Gavin headed down to the Definitive Jux showcase at Mercury Lounge. Beans was the highlight...ultra-animated moves and an unbeatable flow. He's one that I would go out of my way to go see again. Hanger 18, despite looking like an assistant gym teacher teamed up with an extra on the Chapelle Show (pictured above), got the most out of the crowd. I said afterwards that for a guy like that to get up on stage and start rhyming, it would have to take a lot to impress me, and he did. Rob Sonic was the first to go up, and he was alright, but Creature, who was mostly doing his doubles, really stood out when he had a chance to do his own thing. The show was thankfully running about 15 minutes ahead of schedule, but then C-Ray Walz was held up and I was tired, so we bounced before he came out. Aesop Rock was apparently supposed to do a surprise set after C-Ray, but I couldn't stick around to find out. And that was that.

I don't think I'm gonna start hitting up this scene any more than I normally would, but I'm looking forward to seeing Jean Grae at Rothko on the 22nd (right after Colin Meloy's solo set, no less!) and then Aesop Rock at Bowery on 2/23.

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