Review: KRS-One & DJ Premier @O2ForumKTown @IAmKRSOne @RealDjPremier

“My name is Krs-One and I’m from the United States of Amer­ica, the RACIST United States of Amer­ica”
There’s a pause as he allows the audi­ence to react.
“Fuck the police”

Hard-hit­ting and dir­ect with his words, The Blast­mas­ter needed no intro­duc­tion of course, but that wasn’t the point here. Krs-One has nev­er been afraid to speak his edu­cated mind, always rel­ev­ant, and always speak­ing for the people. His large middle fin­ger still pro­trud­ing, arm stretched out towards the packed-out For­um… “fuck the police”, he says it again — just in case any­body missed it the first time.

“It’s not a good time to be a Cop right now, if there are any Cops in the audi­ence you ser­i­ously need to reas­sess your career”.

I didn’t just say ‘large middle fin­ger’ without good reas­on. Krs is a huge man, with a huge pres­ence, felt even more so as I was on stage-side pho­to­graph­ing and only inches away from him — so much so that a few times I had to avoid his sweat driv­ing down on me and my equip­ment. He is 6ft 4 inches tall with a power­ful voice (he spoke briefly to the audi­ence without the micro­phone to demon­strate this), big opin­ions and he’s not afraid to voice them. So if there were any officers of the law in the audi­ence that night, I wouldn’t be sur­prised if some of them had to check them­selves. When Krs-One speaks, every­one listens.

Of course it wasn’t all about polit­ics and social issues, he put on a five star show as per usu­al. This was my 3rd time see­ing him live and he nev­er seems to lose any energy or influ­ence over the years. He came out to “Wel­come To Jam­rock”, pretty unique for a Hip-Hop Artist, but then again that just shows his ver­sat­il­ity and long-term fond­ness for reg­gae. Onto the Hip-Hop — standout per­form­ances were ‘Step Into A World’, where he had a selec­tion of B-Boys break­dan­cing on stage — ‘The DJ’, ‘Out­ta Here’ (an abso­lute favour­ite of mine), ‘South Bronx’ (tak­ing it back!) and of course ‘Fuck The Police’.

Before he did ‘South Bronx’ he asked the crowd if they remembered the 90’s (regarded by many as the most import­ant, and best, dec­ade for Hip-Hop), and then asked how far back they could remem­ber. “Some of you can prob­ably go back to ’94/95? Oth­ers may even recall the start of the 90’s.…well to fully appre­ci­ate a Krs One show you’ve got­ta go back fur­ther than that — to the 80’s!”

“If there are any young­er people in the crowd tonight who have nev­er seen a Krs-One show, you are about to wit­ness a Real MC per­form­ing”

An Artist that has been around for 4 dec­ades, still remains rel­ev­ant, and STILL can rock a packed house. He indeed IS Hip-Hop!

    DJ Premi­er

    This was no ordin­ary show how­ever. There was another Legend on stage, a few feet back, behind the decks, my favour­ite Pro­du­cer of all time, DJ Premi­er. A real DJ and Pro­du­cer and one of the few who have main­tained Dee­jay­ing in its art form, ‘Pree­mo’ was scratch­ing and mix­ing vinyls as he has been doing so for dec­ades, many of the young­er gen­er­a­tion would be clue­less as to what (and how) he was doing.

    Pri­or to Krs-One’s set he was spin­ning clas­sic track after clas­sic track, clas­sic beats and trib­utes. From Nas to Jay Z, Jeru to Fat Joe and Group Home to Gang­starr, it was like a timeline through the 90’s into the early 2000’s of Hip Hop anthems and clas­sics. His lib­rary of music pro­duc­tion is so large and impress­ive that there wasn’t even time to play any of his recent work done for the likes of Dr Dre, The Game and Royce Da 5“9.

    What he did make time for were trib­utes for those no longer with us includ­ing 2pac, Big­gie and ODB. Touch­ingly he got the crowd to raise one hand up in the shape of an ‘L’ for Big L and the oth­er hand lif­ted with a fin­ger point­ing up for his lifelong career part­ner Guru. With a 100% crowd par­ti­cip­a­tion it was a fit­ting trib­ute.
    I am so hon­oured that I was part of this show, this was one for the ages.
    Real Hip-Hop lives on.

    *I Am Hip-Hop Magazine team is aware of the recently pub­lished child abuse alleg­a­tions. If our read­ers would like to find more inform­a­tion on this mat­ter, please refer to oth­er sources. Our writers are exclus­ively review­ing live per­form­ances and will not com­ment on any char­ac­ter dir­ectly or indir­ectly involved in such mat­ters. We appre­ci­ate your under­stand­ing.*

    The fol­low­ing two tabs change con­tent below.
    Ranj Bans

    Ranj Bans

    Ranjit Bans is a Pro­fes­sion­al Pho­to­grapher work­ing at www.magiclifephotography.co.uk, a father of two and Hip Hop enthu­si­ast from the back end of the 80’s through to the 90’s.

About Ranj Bans

Ranj Bans
Ranjit Bans is a Professional Photographer working at www.magiclifephotography.co.uk, a father of two and Hip Hop enthusiast from the back end of the 80's through to the 90's.