I was happy to find Queens Social Club a great venue and the sound for the night clear and well-balanced. It was jam-packed with Hip Hop heads anticipating a great gig from the old school legends collectively know as Blackalicious.
I arrived in time to catch Toast’s own ‘Brown Bear’ introduce the acts with old school energy before Sheffield band Clubs & Spades tore with relish through a stand-out set of confident beats, bold hooks and lyrical finesse. Andy H followed with a storming set, every tune a classic from ‘They Reminisce Over You’ to ‘I’ll be Surprised.’
Even for Blackalicious these were hard acts to follow but the crowd went crazy before the first beat dropped and when ‘Gift of Gab’ grabbed the Mic, crazy got promoted. ‘Gift’s’ flow was tight as-ever with his stand-out style translating to live format better than I’d hoped and the set as a whole felt like an organic mix of their albums, while taking on an energy home listening just can’t replicate. ‘Alphabet Aerobics’ in particular stood out for it’s strong almost inhuman delivery.
I loved the night as a whole and as a climax, Blackalicious did not disappoint.
Review by Peter Andrews.
Pic by Duncan Stafford