AG @ Pirie Street Social, Adelaide May 3rd 2014
There are some acts whose music you listen to for years and I’m not talking two or three, I’m talking acts who work as a soundtrack to your life. It may be the era I grew up in, the early and mid 90s, but the music of the whole DITC crew has thumped out of all my various cars and houses for 20 odd years, so seeing a legend of the crew on his first trip was an opportunity to good to miss.
Arriving to the venue for the first time I was impressed, I’d seen the name popping up on flyers recently, the layout was cool, down a single flight of stairs, decent bar space, few chill areas and then a stage with a low arse roof to give it a grimy club feel when the beats kicked in. Setting the soundtrack early were Nixon and DL, veterans of the scene playing the sort of NYC sounding beats you’d expect to a rapidly filling venue. The crowd was definitely up for it, nobody really interested in posing or preening, just a bunch of heads keen to see a legend.
Kicking things off on the live tip was Vertakill – Roach Scholars – he had great interaction with the crowd straight away, cracking gags and bouncing off the crowd, that crowd has surged to the front instantly keen to peep the start of the night. It had been maybe 6 years since I saw Vertakill live and he still shows the quickness of delivery and stage presence you’d expect from someone who has been around the scene for 10 plus years. The crowd were into it from the get go, I think I even saw someone start breaking midway through the first track, definitely a crowd favourite.
Next up were one of my personal favourite local acts Dialect & Despair, these guys have been honing their craft for a lot of years despite their young age and it really shows in their set. Dialect commands your attention as an emcee, he bounces off Despair well, but more importantly he controls your attention purely with lyrics. It’s not running around the stage losing your shit, it’s more putting everything you have into your lyrics and then spitting them to an eager fan base. Sticking largely to tracks from Self Evident it was as always a super tight set, the acapella of Homeostasis off of the Must Volkoff production album getting a big reaction. Dialect was keen to bounce off the crowd and keep them involved, another bow he has added more in recent times and this duo remains one of Adelaide and Australia’s must see acts.
Warming things up for the headliner and still in the country after spinning in Adelaide over the festival period and at the J5 show was the always dope Total Eclipse. By this stage the crowd was rocking and rammed up in front of the stage. Eclipse worked them higher with each track and had the whole venue jumping, when I say jumping it actually got so live that AG left backstage and came out to rock in the crowd watching the show. You know the party is jumping when the headliner has to leave his rider and get out for a look. As his set wound up host Social Change jumped on stage to get the crowd hyped for the Bronx legend.
AG hit the stage and immediately got it rocking, I haven’t seen a crowd that amped and rapping along to every single bar in a long time. Every time he spat the crowd rocked right along with him, wether he was on top of the speaker stack or taking a walk out into the crowd people hung off his every word, like a KRS One does in the live element he more than delivers the performance his classic back catalogue warrants.
Not happy with the sound at one point we got another interlude from Total Eclipse, the crowd by that stage so into that sang every word of tracks like Shook Ones. With the sound fixed AG came back and killed the rest of the show. As the beat kicked for my favourite Show and AG track Spit, I joined the rest of the crowd rocking, AG was loving the vibe himself and on completion decided he was going to spit it front to back again, incredible. If you love hip hop and that golden era sound, fuck if you love hip hop at all, you need to get along to the remainder of the tour!