Galactic, Jarv Dee, Rakim, Method Man
Holy crap, if you missed that Cam'ron show, I feel bad for you, son. No, it's okay, dude just really killed the Crocodile with a very commanding 45 minutes of his hits. Kind of restored my faith in the rap show, I won't lie. (Too many boring MCs with zero charisma, too many shitty sets rapped over vocal tracks are to blame for me losing it in the first place—is it you?) Okay, lots of shows to touch, as we wrap up the second month of 2013—huh?—but the most important being Rakim at Neumos. More on that in a sec, tho.
Playing on Friday, February 22, at Showbox at the Market is New Orleans's own funky fucks Galactic—a really dope band if you like what people older than me (imagine!) call "real music," but damn good even (or especially) if your palate is all scorched earth from same-sounding radio pop- gangsta trap rap (and "Thrift Shop," of course). They cross up old-school N'awlins funk with everything nice; plus these days, they're armed with Living Colour's mighty Corey Glover on the vocals, so what's fuckin' with that? Oh yeah, and Latyrx is touring with them, too. Get down.
But then you gotta get up on Saturday, to the gig of your choice. Firstly, lemme get a conflict-of-interest air horn for a show I masterminded up at the Comet Tavern on Capitol Hill: featuring Jarv Dee, Tacoma's rising ILLFIGHTYOU clique, and Gift uh Gab. That's Moor Gang plus the 253's most ig'nant, plus yours truly playing cuts (probably off my phone or something). Or you can take a different route up to Nectar to catch local cigarette burn rap king Sadistik. He'll be aided and abetted by Sleep and Josh Martinez's evergreen combo the Chicharones, the MC Type (who's been killing it on the satire front, between his spot-on spoofs of emo rap and egregious backpackery), and the prodigious one-man underground terror cell Graves33.
Which brings us up to Monday, February 25, at Neumos: Rakim Allah, the R, the 18th Letter, the Microphone Fiend. This guy is a god among MCs, duh—even Nas would run to the store for the dude. Rakim's King-of-the-Jungle style epitomizes a timeless cool that is the gold standard of rap presentation, and I'm looking forward to checking him, along with Grynch (who's got a 12-inch with Budo coming on Fin Records) and Fearce and Bean, who capture some of that MC/DJ magic that the R once enjoyed with OG cornrow-wearer Eric B.
Neumos is going back-to-back on some cold NYC hiphop (from Strong Island to Shaolin, to be specific), as Tuesday finds it (and Neema) hosting the Ticallion Stallion, Hot Nickelz, Johnny Fuckin' Blaze—you know, Method Man from the Wu-Tang Clan. (In a nice regional party platter, Seattle's RA Scion, Tacoma's Leezy, and Portland's Serge Severe open up.) Anybody who's seen the Wu knows that Mef is the live wire at any show and loves walking on top of the crowd's hands, so bring some Purell. He's also the owner of some of the snottiest, grungiest, piss-in-the-project-hall-iest bars ever, so please "Release Yo Delf" and enjoy yourself, bitches. It's a celebration.