Grime and US Rap are two genres which are evolving and coming together to get become a great collaboration within the music industry. With admired artists accepting Grime such as Drake and Kanye West, Guap Magazine kindly sent me to my first Grime & US Rap gig yesterday. With A$AP TyY, Snowy, 0115 MOB, Phundo Art & Space City performing it was a mixture of feelings and craziness which was worth every minute of being there.
It took a while to get a good amount of people in the venue so that Space City could perform, however they didn’t care if there was 5 or 50 people in the room, they still put on a show. This lead them to performing twice ! Around 11:10 PM there was bare minimum in the crowd and by this time 0115 MOB, Phundo Art & Space City should’ve performed already however this wasn’t the case. A few moments later some of the members from Space City hopped on the stage to get their vocals warmed up and to send some positive energy around the room. The vibrations were bouncing off the building which drew the people from the freezing cold and into the venue. 10 minutes later they came off stage and I felt like this was a little teaser too because the audience was wanting more at this point and we wanted to hear more of the Space City funky collective. At 11:43 PM they made there second appearance with more members (Harry Dirtface, Tony Spark, Johnny, Bobby & Jimmy) so it was also like double the energy, they went onto perform some of their best singles yet such as “Funk in the trunk”, “Lean with my crew”, “Rap Sh*t” & “In the Whip”. One of the male members in the group had long hair so when the beat dropped all you saw was brunette hair flying around which made me smile because you could see that the crowd wanted to be able to do that and have the feeling what the performer had.
From the crowd not really knowing who he is, to leaving the venue with fans knowing his lyrics, Phundo Art did the most ! He turned moshpits into whippin excursions and whippin excursions into hardcore bounces. All of this came from the 5 tracks he performed, “Wasabi” which is off his last and most recent EP “BNG TAPE”, “Amandla”, “Wun”, “Revenge” & his latest visuals which is out on JDZ Media “Skinny Denim ft. Jinx Touchwood”. With his Kurt Cobain glasses, grey cameo jacket and South African presence he stood out and was literally bursting out of skin to make to make it one of the best shows he’s done. The moshpits looked very enticing however I knew if I was to get involved it would have gone so wrong, my little self would have got squished on.
One of the most original MCs hailing from Nottingham touched the mic and ripped the place to shreds, yes ! It’s the one and only Snowy ! Before he even spat his bars, his soul brightened up the place and you could tell that the energy and vibe in the room started to level and rise up. The first track which he performed was has latest banger “5000V Prod. Plastician” the hook ’Hit ‘Em like a lightning bolt’ got the crowd right on their tip-toes shouting and catching onto his fast flow as well as getting warmed up for what was about to come next. The first pack of wheels up softly dropped straight into the palm of his hands when two of iTunes bestseller Grime tracks played, “Durt” & “Do/Dont’s”. The feedback he received was so fiery and dynamic Snowy surfed into the audience and merged with the fans which created a ball full of passion and liveliness for the performance. Kyeza AKA Shinobi AKA The showman MC then revealed his full identity on stage when he sprayed pure fire with his fellow friend (Snowy) doing 16s bars each going back to back.
The three rappers that smashed their performance was Yijay, Sollie & Blacko all from the upcoming group “0115 MOB”. The energy was still cushioned and fulfilled inside the four walls from the last act which gave the rappers the opportunity to keep up the momentum and they did much more than that. They made head bopping look like the most bonkers thing I have ever seen ! With the banger “Chinatown” which was released all the way back in 2016, the crowd remembered and spazzed out on the track differently. A lot of arm movements where flying about in the air as well as seeing mini heads going up and down from where the audience was jumping up and down. At this point I could smell a lot of Red Bull and man sweat in the air so I knew it was serious. The 0115 MOB boys went on to perform some exclusives and new releases such as “Flawless”, “Volts”, “Two Times” & “Imaginary bands”. From where I was standing when all these tracks where rolling off the decks, it looked like the crowd and rappers formed a bond within the shortest amount of time and it was a beautiful experience being able to watch the love and excitement in-front of my eyes.
Before the show I bucked up with A$AP TyY in the studio to see how he is finding his Europe tour and he learning so much about culture and the music. We asked him what he really thinks about Grime and he said “I appreciate the music and I love the energy however the accent is challenging”, this made everyone giggle as we know that we have a variety of accents in Grime and it even can be difficult to us. When he arrived at the venue he was just vibzing and in chill mode, you could see that he was warming and was very intrigued to the environment he was in. “New York state of mind” & “Chamber Lock ft A$AP Yams” were personal tracks to TyY as he raps about Struggles and his blessings. At first the UK fans didn’t know how to react to his stage presence as 0115 MOB just came off stage and the vibe was completely different. But the more he was unraveling the more it was easier to connect and he did a wicked job of it. In between performances TyY shook hands of the fans and even spoken to them on a personal level whilst being on stage which showed the audience that he was super chilled and they can be on the same wave they were when the UK acts performed. Then something magical happened ! 0115 MOB joined him on stage and went absolutely wild, the hook to one of his latest tracks “Bust it open” was so catchy you couldn’t not take part in the madness. Within seconds I felt the floor shaking, the bass blasting 10X harder and I saw the roof being teared down and I wasn’t surprised at all as I saw it all coming, the UK had to show the US how we really vibe and bubble.
This was something I have never experienced before, and I was very sceptical of how the event would turn out, however it was easily one of the most enjoyable events I have been too. At times I found it difficult to rock with the music I wasn’t very familiar with but it didn’t matter ! It was the energy and comfort that made it mesmerising for me.
by Khadejia Ghislanzoni