Barboza Capitol Hill
Wed., March 8, 8 p.m. 2017 21+
I still worry about you, Seattle—and your frustrating propensity for missing the moon, staring at the finger pointing at it. Porter Ray, as a millennial Black rapper from Seattle that’s not necessarily cast as an antidote/alternative to contemporary rap music, has a hill to climb with his new album, Watercolor. Sub Pop is a venerable label with worldwide cachet, but if its fan base only has room for the kind of rap act that’s too often invoked to prove that other kinds of rap are dumb, how are they going to relate to the well-crafted vignettes of a Central District hustler? And are real rap heads in Seattle and everywhere else even checking for hiphop bearing Sub Pop’s two-toned masthead (like they should)? It’s a windfall that he landed on the biggest game in town, yes, but don’t get it twisted—Porter’s artful shit is top-shelf, town-bred intergenerational (peep revered CD MC Infinite on “Arithmetic”) game, served neat. Newest single “Lightro” is proof and pudding. LARRY MIZELL JR.