WARNING: This picture has absolutely nothing to do with this blog post!!!
I was, trying to march crotch-first into a steamy mess of new
hip-hop, when my wasted ass – detached from whatever cranial
department it typically receives commands from – stomped across
Austin for a set by Mobb Deep. I just can't resist Havoc and Prodigy;
no little kid rapper with cool shades and an ironic t-shirt can curb
that feeling. But before I got there, it was quite a trip through rap
sub-genres and various flavors of inebriation . . .
Phoenix in-house samurai and music beat writer Michael Walsh is
helping guide this voyage of mine, guiding me to youthful and
invigorated hip-hop next-ups (that's him in the back left corner of
the pic below sporting the Richard Simmons tee). Yesterday Walsh
lured me to catch Oakland duo Main Attrakionz (and their wild ass
extended entourage) at Club Soho, and I'm still not sure what to
think of them.
like to say that Main Attrakionz reflect shades of Odd Future and The
Pack, but that's a copout, and I'm sure there are a number of
intricacies that glided over my 32-year-old noggin. With that said, I
have to salute the dude in the group who walked across the club to
examine his gold fronts in a mirror near the bar, and to whoever
wrote the hook, “You can catch the wall with it.” That shit is
pretty genius, not to mention an indication that I still find
excitement in arcane references to fucking, drug abuse, and/or
then it happened. I couldn't believe it, like some hybrid of an oasis
and a miracle. It was Vermin Supreme, the world's friendliest (and
perhaps most hilarious) anarchist, perennial presidential candidate,
and all-around amazing guy. Vermin's never been to South-by before,
but his handlers convinced him that the demographic was ripe for his
message, whatever that may be, from mandatory toothbrushing to riding
ponies into the future. They were correct; even to his amazement,
Vermin is a hero to countless fun-loving party animals down here,
former Texas governor Rick Perry withstanding.
high on my progressive nuts, I moved to check Wheelchair Sports Camp
at Club 606, which I think used to be the Creekside. I've been a huge
fan of theirs for years, and recently connected with their MC, Kalyn,
a whole bunch online about Occupy. She's one of the most aggressive
and intelligent rap activists out there, from her fiery rhymes, to
her protest demeanor, to the fact that she's in a wheelchair and
seems to navigate the largely inaccessible downtown Austin landscape
like a pro.
have to prop the whole WSC crew; Kalyn's drummer Isaac smacks shit
silly, while homegirl Abi's sax skills and golden pipes fit the
organic mix something lovely. The Creekside set was killer; there
wasn't a single ogling person in the venue who wasn't paying full
attention to Kaylyn's liberal venom, and to her raw indictments of
convention and oppression.
that she is, Kalyn convinced me that it would be fine to smoke a
joint at the Fake Four show at 512 Bar. Props to Fake Four by the
way; Ceschi Ramos, Factor, and just about everybody else on that
roster are marinating in a zone that others will arrive at . . .
never. I only got to catch Sole – insightful and curmudgeonly as
ever – but will certainly be looking out for the whole gang all
week. Back to Kalyn though – we got kicked out of 512 for burning,
and I have to apologize for bolting out of there like George Costanza
in a house fire. Shit was definitely badass though.
that wasn't hardcore enough, my next stop was to see Mobb Deep at
Lustre Pearl. In all honesty, I didn't think the Infamous would
really be there. Not because they're any less reliable than other
hip-hop acts, but because the thought of catching Prodigy and Havoc
in Austin was more than I could wrap my skull around. They did show
up though. And it was amazing. Prodigy slugged through a couple of
classics before being joined by Big Noyd, at which point the energy
spiked. Noyd, for those of you who don't know but are for still
reading this blog post for some reason, is Mobb Deep's battery, an
unrelenting ball of hood energy and roughneck rhymes.
zero notes as P and company paraded through the realest catalogue in
hip-hop. Instead I just enjoyed myself, pounding these two fists at
the sky all the way through “Shook Ones.” I wasn't alone; young
cats, indie rockers, and a mess of other pot-bellied purists like
yours truly all rejoiced in the mayhem, which piqued when Havoc
emerged for a crush of verses. I'm still processing the experience,
but one thing is for sure: there's a fest going on outside no man is
safe from – especially a man who's trying to give a fuck about buzz
rappers who couldn't carry Mobb Deep's jock strap in a U-Haul.