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Hipster Hop - Hipster Heads

Hipster Hop

by Rob Cockcroft / Images by Paul Ward / 19.10.2011

For the first time in a long while I’m actually excited to be attending a hip hop party, especially because it’s at Evol which carries the stigma of drawing emo hipster crowds. I’m over the whole knapsack-rocking hip hop purist vibe I’ve been checking out of late where everyone is a stone-faced rap critic. I just want to get drunk and jam and not be ice-grilled for it. I want to be around people in 80’s/90’s throwback gear who don’t give a fuck about ‘keeping it real’ and how deep the last punchline they heard was.

My heart sinks as I reach the door, though, as only one solitary figure jams alone to Jedi Mind Tricks on the chequered dance floor. I buy a beer, secure a table in the corner and do what I’m paid to – social observation. The lone dancer keeps me entertained. He’s kitted out in a Nu Era baseball cap, three-quarter denim shorts, Chuck Taylors folded over at the top, but you can’t see his legs because he’s wearing what appear to be woollen black man-stockings. Hipster hop!

Opening Image - Hipster Hop

There must have been a memo sent out because all of a sudden everybody arrives on cue. The place fills out pretty quickly and the people don’t waste time. Drinks are purchased and they join the milieu forming in front of the deejay who is playing the likes of DOOM and Ill Bill. A dope graffiti video is being screened, which is great for the aesthetics… and when you want to act like you haven’t seen someone you don’t want to talk to.

Hip hop heads always need to prove their encyclopedic knowledge of lyrics. They rap along to every track. Even when they’re wasted and they’ve forgotten half the words they’ll at least attempt to utter the correct amount of syllables. I prefer to think of myself as more of an ad lib kinda guy. It’s also not hard to spot the friends of the organisers. They’re the dudes acting like the club is their lounge, jumping up on stage at every opportunity, screaming out for every track being played and generally looking like they’re creaming their pants from over-excitement.

Hipster Hop - Remy G

Remy Gold steps up to the booth and plays a set that is similar to a mixtape heads of my generation will compile for their own house party. I mean this in a good way. It’s a set based on classics like Dr Dre’s “What’s the difference”, Mobb Deep’s “Shook Ones” and Jr Gong’s “Welcome to Jamrock”.

League of Shadows are the first crew to take the stage. In addition to the usual suspects- Garlic Brown, Gambeno and Sammy Sparks- tonight emcee Apollo joins the team, as well as their dj/producer and social media punter Einstein Adonis. Garlic Brown had to take out his false teeth in case he spit them out and sliced the jugular of someone in the crowd, making it a literal sacrificial offering. Tonight’s set feels a lot more improvised, if not messy at times. Repetitive, droning beats, like the Necro “Scumbags” instrumental Einstein Adonis drops, provide the backdrop as each emcee takes turns weaving their verses into the track, sometimes filling in the gaps by breaking into freestyles. Apollo breaks up the continuity by spitting a whole track in a capella, but I’m losing interest. Overall, though, the set is a highly-charged tapestry of vocal ranges and dark, demonic subject matter, allowing each emcee to showcase their own definitive style. The crowd eat it up and spit it back out, showing love with the same intensity.

When LOS are done I’m fiending for more live performances. It’s not happening, though, so for a long time I’m guzzling beer, ogling the surprising turnout of beautiful women (for a hip hop party) and being a sociable nuisance. I heed a warning from the bouncer who slaps me on the back and tells me to get my ass off the pool table and I head back to the dance floor.

Hipster Hop - MC Lovin'

Disco Izrael and Fuzzy Slippers are at the decks, all smiles and gang signs in the air, thuggin’ it out as best as urban middle-class boys can. They play standout tracks by Busta Rhymes and an insane remix of some or other Li’l Wayne song. Then they call all the “bitches” to come and stand in front of the stage while they rap. Their beats are electro-fied, bassy hip hop. Unfortunately the words come out a little muffled, unable to cut across the heavy layered instrumentals. However, they make up for it with their city bowl street-cred and cocky braggadocio showmanship, hand motions gesticulating they’re jizzing all over their fans. Their flows are energetic, bouncy and nu-skool, making it easy to stop caring about what they’re saying and just get swept up in the vibe. I don’t want to leave but my teetotalling peeps from Awe! Cape Town want to jet, but fuck it I’ll be back again.

Hipster Hop - Keeping It Real

*All images © Diary Of Ward

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RESPONSES (24)
  1. Poster says:

    I like your reviews, bro. And that you have a balanced and most positive view of both the old and nu skool cats.

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  2. The Paper Cut Killer says:

    Very nice article! Just to clarify this party is called “the yard” and is a collaborative effort between myself and the people involved in “young supreme”. We were aiming to to blend the new tyler the creator generation of hip hop with the mean mugging stone faces of older days to break down barriers and create a friendly atmosphere for all appreciating any form of hip hop. I’m extremely happy you picked up on that. There were a few hick ups as you noted but this was the first of many and things will only get better from here. The bar is set! We hope to see you at the next one please be sure to let us know when “mahala” are attending again so we can put you on the list because it’s articles like this that give us a strong view from a person attending’s perspective and we are extremely thankful for it!

    easy
    PCK

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  3. AWE Cape Town says:

    AWE, justice Rob!

    I will refrain from droning on about how retarded those androgynous-chic 90’s mimickers are simply because the music that night was ON point. More live acts would have been amazing too.

    Big up yourselves Young Supreme, we’re definitely going to stay until the music shuts off next time.

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  4. Magical Nero says:

    Cool review, and right on point. Remy Gold killed it. You didn’t mention the “I like tits. Do you like tits?” rant before LOS took the stage. Probably a good thing.

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  5. poenbek says:

    @magical nero elaborate yo!

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  6. Magical Nero says:

    Not much to elaborate on. “I like tits. You like tits. We like tits.” Repeated for way too long. Eventually the crew started rapping. Its a pet peeve of mine with some MC’s. There’s way too many “yoyoyo’s” and shout outs before they actually spit verses. It brings the energy down, especially after such a nice DJ set to build the mood. Maybe its minor thing, but it messed with my vibe.

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  7. Real feedback says:

    PCK – gag on a promotional cock

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  8. AWE Cape Town says:

    AWE Magical Nero, as far as I know, that tits guy had nothing to do with LOS and was just a guy who shouldn’t be allowed on the mic.

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  9. dnsr says:

    i like ur writing

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  10. DEX says:

    @ Real feedback EAT A BAG OF DICKS PPL JUST
    TRYING TO DO DOPE SHIT let them promote

    The party was of the hook thanks to Young Supreme
    and papercut killer and the acts that performed
    evan the tits guy
    Hip Hop party with no egos and hot girls
    is some thing cape town has not seen in a long time

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  11. poenbek says:

    dex speaks truth

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  12. koolkid says:

    @real feedback its peeps lyk u who shuldn be alowd in da partys u wil ruin it 4 every1 tanx 4 da party yung supreme and pck ill be at da nex 1

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  13. I am a branded humanoid. says:

    whats with paul ward.
    ?

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  14. homey-san says:

    @I am a branded humanoid.

    paul ward was there. pity he didn’t stick around for any shots of the league though!

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  15. homey-san says:

    also just to note, Kid Klever aka the “I Like Tits” Guy is a dope emcee and a killer freestyler, just a pity you couldn’t really tell from his performance on saturday…

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  16. Real feedback says:

    Actually no, the opposite is true its people like me who keep you hoes in check. I didn’t attend this Young Supreme, but it does sound like the cats made more effort then usual. But on the whole, this party is not about real niggas doing real shit, its about real hipsters, trying really hard. I suppose this is what happens when you sell STREET CRED as a brand.

    And @PCK – a good article like this, well written, eloquent and fairly balanced gets completely undermined by an ‘eat a bag of dicks’ comment like you posted. Thank you, thank you, correction, misinformation – come off it, be real, or at least make it look like you are trying to be real!

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  17. Anonymous says:

    hip hop is dead. you are all boring now. it’s done. take your flat cap with the sticker, your pussy clothing, and bullshit struggle and hardcore out there ideas and fuck yourselves. it’s all been done already to death. you are all just perpetuating the cliche’. grow up, get lives, create something new for a change. assholes

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  18. pedro de pacas says:

    art is dead. hip-hop is alive.

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  19. rob c says:

    Anonymous, bitter much? if everyone had to play by your rules there’d have to be a new genre of music created for every party.

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  20. DEX says:

    @Real feedback You should stick to your stone-faced rap scene and let these kids
    do what thy do. You prob just bitter cause your “real” hip hop party’s is full of egos and no bitches LOL what a chop

    Any one that got some thing bad to say, Is just and Old biter Hip Hop Head
    These Kids our Doing dope shit. evan thow thy not the typical hip hop heads

    I big them up
    And Ive been in the CT scene since 2000

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  21. gunston says:

    Paul Ward is Theirry Guetta.

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  22. Wak says:

    I love Hip-Hop, I just wish the whole idea of “real” and fake” mc’s die before Hip-Hop does.

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  23. kak says:

    hip hop party diffrent 2 hip hop mc??!!!! make a party jus dont mc spray scratch break if u wak coz u wil get chew up

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  24. The Baws says:

    Rucksacks are back!

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