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.*

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    Ranj Bans

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

About Ranj Bans

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