REVIEW: BLATANTLY BLUNT (@blatantlyblunt) CELEBRATE 10 YEARS FT @FRSHRZ @bigCAKES @GEEBAGULAR @confuciusmc @ShaoDowMusic @MicallParknsun ‏ @SCRUFIZZER @Heavytrackerz

Nearly any­one who reads this will agree that inde­pend­ent media is not an easy game to be in. It’s a hard grind, so to run an inde­pend­ent media plat­form for 10 years is a big achieve­ment. That’s exactly what Blatantly Blunt were cel­eb­rat­ing on Decem­ber 16th at Junc­tion House, Dal­ston with a night ded­ic­ated to the type of Hip Hop and Grime they’ve been sup­port­ing on their web­site, radio show and live events since 2007.  In asso­ci­ation with Hooch­inoo, another plat­forms that’s been back­ing the scene for years, Blatantly Blunt founder Nick Rus­sell had sor­ted out a ser­i­ous lineup of emcees and DJs for a show­case of tal­ent from the over­lap­ping gen­res of the Lon­don music scene. Nick was on the mic intro­du­cing each act with big Yet­izm run­ning the wheels.

The night opened with a group that have really impressed me this year, from the qual­ity of their out­put to their work rate, Hip Hop fash­ion con­nois­seurs the FRSHRS. Unfor­tu­nately, I missed their per­form­ance, I got there just as they fin­ished, but after see­ing them per­form a few times in 2017 I know they brought the same energy, lyr­ic­al slick­ness and good vibes that has seen them build a solid, grow­ing fan base for their soul­ful, pos­it­ive Hip Hop.

The first per­form­ance I did catch in full was from my man Gee Bag. Fresh from tak­ing 3rd place at the 2017 EOW World Final in Prague, Gee brought the same level of lyr­i­cism and stage pres­ence that got him in that top 3. We got treated to some rid­dims from his new pro­ject with DJ Down­stroke, with the man him­self hold­ing down the decks, and Gee is def­in­itely keep­ing his levels up. Kissy K’s mak­ing a rare appear­ance on the album, and Gee man­aged to get him on stage to per­form it.

confuscious

The next per­former was another emcee who’s had an impress­ive year, put­ting in a lot of work includ­ing sup­port­ing Jeh­st and Kate Tem­pest, Con­fucius MC hit the stage with his unique style of lyr­i­cism wrapped in a real laid back flow. He put down his bars on some raw boom bap before flip­ping it up on the last track ‘Dif­fer­ent End­ings’. The beats some double time, exper­i­ment­al elec­tron­ic shit that got the heads inside mov­ing, still with that laid back flow and dope bars. Go check it on Con­fucius’ ‘Art­form’ EP.

UK Hip Hop OG and Blatantly Blunt radio host Mic­all Parkn­sun stepped up next and took the energy in the room up a level. Char­ging round the stage, the man behind Me, Myself and Akai worked through a set of his MPC pro­duced music from before and through­out the 10 years that Blatantly Blunt has been act­ive. ‘So What’ from his 2005 debut ‘The Work­ing Class Dad’ had the whole crowd vib­sing and showed that dope music stays banging, qual­ity can take the test of time.

big cakes

Big Cakes is another OG of the scene, and every time I see the brother per­form I ques­tion wheth­er I’ve ever seen any­one inter­act with a crowd as good as he does. On top of being a crazy emcee, between tracks it’s a mix of real talk and stand up that elev­ates the atmo­sphere wherever he’s per­form­ing. This set was clas­sic Cakes, and like Parky he ran through a careers worth of fire from his huge body of work, right up to his latest release ‘No Excuses’. The track of his per­form­ance was ‘Toast’; the heart­felt beat and bars had every­one inside spit­ting along with the hook.

With all the Hip Hop done, there was a break before set­ting the Grime off with a fully ori­gin­al act. Des­pite grow­ing up on Wu-Tang, I’ve nev­er seen a brud­da bring nun­chaku on stage and use them, in the dark, cas­u­ally pulling off ridicu­lously high kicks and speak­ing Japanese…all while spit­ting Grime with crazy energy. I have now that I’ve seen Shaodow. Dude is an entity into him­self – go check his track Katana Flow, it’s about his love for swords, and keep an eye out for him on Ninja War­ri­or UK soon.

screw

The tone was set nicely for the head­line act. The HeavyTrackerz have been pro­du­cing bangers for years and have worked with some of the biggest names in Grime, now some of the biggest emcees in the world. They put down a fire set, mix­ing in ori­gin­al pro­duc­tions with bangers from the early days of Grime to now, show­ing the caliber of DJ and pro­du­cers they are and get­ting the heads in the spot hyped.

To end the night off, Grime emcee Screw­fizzer rolled through with a bag of emcees shut down the night, bring­ing the energy and raw­ness that has taken the Lon­don born gen­re to the levels it has in the last few years. With the per­fect end to a dope night, Blatantly Blunt can move into the next 10 years of their mis­sion with con­fid­ence.

The fol­low­ing two tabs change con­tent below.
Apex Zero

Apex Zero

Apex Zero is an emcee and beat maker who has been express­ing his anti-polit­ic­al views and extend­ing his work towards defin­ing, inspir­ing and cre­at­ing last­ing change through Hip Hop for over a dec­ade. Apex has been work­ing with grass­roots and mil­it­ant organ­isa­tions, edu­cat­ing him­self and oth­ers, organ­ising and build­ing towards over­turn­ing the oppress­ive mech­an­ism at large since his mid-teens, around the same time that he entered London’s under­ground Hip Hop scene as part of his crew, First and Last with his brother OMeza Omni­scient. Years of earn­ing respect and enhan­cing their repu­ta­tion, which lead to col­lab­or­a­tions and work­ing rela­tion­ships with many of the scenes most prom­in­ent artists and organ­isa­tions, mani­fes­ted in the Octo­ber 2013 release of Apex’s debut solo album ‘Real­ity Pro­vok­ing Lib­er­a­tion’. The 15 tracks of self-described ‘Neo-Hard­core Hip Hop’ gathered inter­na­tion­al acclaim from both fans and crit­ics, fur­ther enhan­cing Apex’s repu­ta­tion as one of the strongest and clearest voices in anti-polit­ic­al, ‘revolu­tion­ary’ Hip Hop in the UK. Based in Beijing, China since 2014, Apex has been trav­el­ling out­side of the UK, seek­ing new per­spect­ives and aim­ing at enhan­cing his out­look, explor­ing dif­fer­ent soci­et­ies, con­nect­ing with Hip Hop heads, act­iv­ists and schol­ars world­wide. Like his music, his writ­ing is often an exten­sion of his ideas and efforts to effect change in the world whil­st enhan­cing and elev­at­ing both the cul­ture of Hip Hop and the people who embody it.

About Apex Zero

Apex Zero
Apex Zero is an emcee and beat maker who has been expressing his anti-political views and extending his work towards defining, inspiring and creating lasting change through Hip Hop for over a decade. Apex has been working with grassroots and militant organisations, educating himself and others, organising and building towards overturning the oppressive mechanism at large since his mid-teens, around the same time that he entered London’s underground Hip Hop scene as part of his crew, First and Last with his brother OMeza Omniscient. Years of earning respect and enhancing their reputation, which lead to collaborations and working relationships with many of the scenes most prominent artists and organisations, manifested in the October 2013 release of Apex’s debut solo album ‘Reality Provoking Liberation’. The 15 tracks of self-described ‘Neo-Hardcore Hip Hop’ gathered international acclaim from both fans and critics, further enhancing Apex’s reputation as one of the strongest and clearest voices in anti-political, ‘revolutionary’ Hip Hop in the UK. Based in Beijing, China since 2014, Apex has been travelling outside of the UK, seeking new perspectives and aiming at enhancing his outlook, exploring different societies, connecting with Hip Hop heads, activists and scholars worldwide. Like his music, his writing is often an extension of his ideas and efforts to effect change in the world whilst enhancing and elevating both the culture of Hip Hop and the people who embody it.