Archive for sage francis

From the Rail: Soundset ’09 Part 1 (Pics)

Posted in Concert Reviews, Music News with tags , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , on Monday, May 25, 2009 by Erik Burg

crowd3

Soundset ’09. A weekend for the ages. From the collective hundreds of dollars we spent at Town Hall brewery the night before the show all the way to eating Culvers the day after with Sage Francis, Soundset was everything it promised to be. I came for the Doom and I got it (surprisingly), I lost count of the number of Atmosphere shirts I saw (god only knows what ticket sales would be like without them), I chilled backstage with some of the greatest in the game for two hours (sometimes I get lucky). I’m here now to share these moments with you through the pictures I gathered. Check for part 2 (videos) tomorrow!

Slug 2(Atmosphere)

The mainstage at Soundset saw some ridiculous talent all day. For the second year in a row hometown demi-gods Atmosphere headlined it all, but I’m willing to argue that some of the lesser acts where much much better. Let’s start with I Self Devine. Not a terrible opening act at all. His message about what going on in Minneapolis was great: Poverty growing horizontal instead of vertical. That’s important and all, but his stage presence fell a bit short. Look for big things on album though in the future.

iself1

Next we have Blueprint, the man maybe more well known for his work as the rhyming half of Soul Position. For being stuck way too low on the setlist, Blueprint made sure he left the crowd surprised. His presence on stage was unreal, he had a way of making it look so easy, standing in place with a backpack on for a while, Blue seemed like he was merely talking. It was beautiful, and I think the crowd definitely had the same reaction, especially when he closed with “Drugs, Sex, Alcohol, Rock ‘N Roll.” 

blueprint2

The trio of Abstract Rude, Aceyalone, and Myka 9 were next up on the beyond beautiful day at Canterbury Downs. I was really unfamiliar with all three, except for a Aceyalone track that was on a video game a few years ago, ha. They were all full of energy and seemed really excited to be on the main stage, but I felt like their music, and especially Myka 9 were not so hot. I have to say that I would have much rather seen Cunninlynguists or Blue Scholars in their spot, but nothing is perfect I suppose. Let’s keep going though….

abstract2

abstract3

Now the real talent began raining down. Eyedea & Abilities took the stage after those three left, and the crowd finally started to get into it. Thanks to Eyedea’s awesome persona and DJ Abilities stellar work on the tables, the show finally had the energy to match the hype. Abilities might really stole the show actually, with his 6 or 7 minute exhibit to all wanna-be DJs out there. The group is set to release their first album in 5 years next month and they played a few very good cuts off of it. A good start to a long day, for sure.

eyedea5

eyedea1

Immortal Technique. I feel like if I write anything bad about this guy that he’ll personally seek me out and do terrible things to my health. SO I’ll talk about some of the better things instead. The guys spits absolute fire, both lyrically and emotionally. The rants between songs and at the end of his set was both overly powerful and inspiring. Apparently he wants all of you to illegally download his albums, so thats cool I guess. He has a flow that matches a lot of what he brings to his records, aggression and precision, a deadly combination. Probably the most vocal off the cut of any artist there, maybe a good thing maybe a bad thing. Good stuff though.

immortal1

immortal3

We’re just heating up folks….

One of the biggest names on Rhymesayers lately has been P.O.S. His work with Doomtree and on his solo album is stellar, not to mention is punk band as well. He took to the stage as the first truly recognizable face to probably a majority of the crowd, initiating a spirit from the crowd that had yet to be seen. Armed with more than a DJ, POS rocked the guitar and MPC as well as the mic. It was awesome to see him interact with the crowd and give newer fans of Rhymesayers a chance to enjoy some of their best talent. Playing “Low Light Low Life” with a full cast was one of the best tracks all day at Soundset, and the only chance that a girl got to rock the mic on the main stage. 

pos2

pos4

pos3

A little guy by the name of Sage Francis took to the stage next, note the pun, looking even more out of place than 20,000 white kids at a hip-hop festival, Sage dominated the crowd thanks to antics with buddy and partner in crime B. Dolan. The two brought some much needed respect from the east coast, specifically the booming Rhode Island scene, note the sarcasm. But his set absolutely rocked, Sage seemed like one of the few performers to actually enjoy himself up there, and the guys was super personable when I Got to chat with him backstage (more on that later). 

sage3

sage1

Good to see Def Jux getting some love on the main stage again this year, El-P, the king of New York independent hip-hop thrashed his way through some of his best material on I’ll Sleep When You’re Dead and Fantastic Damage as well. Highlighted by “Tasmanian Pain Coaster” at the start, El-P seemed intent on blowing the crowd away with pure sound. His set was far and away the loudest of any artist, and the compliment of Mr. Dibbs on the decks was a sight beyond belief. Check for more on that tomorrow, including Mr. Dibb‘s entire 8 minute freestyle on the decks.

elp6

elp4

elp3

The most “mainstream” artists there was quite possibly Freeway, complimented equally by Jake One on the 1s and 2s. It’s safe to say that this set was the best good surprise of the day. Freeway’s style and flow was exponentially better than I thought it was going to be, exciting me for the entire Freeway and Jake One album coming out this summer called The Stimulus Package. All that could have been improved was if Jake One did some amazing DJ freestyle like we all know he could, but oh well.

freeway1

freeway2

freeway3

Doom came next… or was suppose to at least. We got Brother Ali instead.

Not a bad trade I guess, but still, what the fuck Super Villain? The show must go on, and Brother Ali took over in the clutch. It was an amazing moment when the crowd started chanting “The truth is here, the truth is here” right before he came on, and Ali really seemed to fee off that intro. He had the biggest grin on his face nearly the entire set, playing tons of new and old stuff, but every track was one to sing along to. His set seemed the most polished vocally, Ali spit with such confidence and precision that it was jaw dropping and yet extremely upbeat. The essence of Minneapolis hip-hop, Brother Ali dominated a crowd antsy for what they didn’t see and anxious for the next Rhymesayers king to take the mic. 

brotherali4

brotherali1

brotherali6

And then it happened… The moment We’ve (I’d) been waiting for… The MF Doom show pulled into town…

doom8

The man’s more of a show now than he is a straight performer, but it was still awesome to see him actually perform live. After the imposter Doom (side) that is, ha. Playing the classic “Hoe Cakes” to a crowd that seemed almost fed up with the antics and the hype. But I wasdoom7 loving it, and it was at this point I made my break for it, for the big times, for backstage. Jumped the fence, took some video (check tomorrow for it), took some photos, and just bee lined straight for the other side of the stage. Amongst some of my heros I sought out Doom’s van that he just minutes ago rode in on. And there he was, the Villain, DOOM, MF Doom, Metal Fingers, Viktor Vaughn, you know the list goes on. So I snapped a great picture and sat down next to the legend. I hardly remember what I said, I think I just thanked him over and over, ha. Doom was well worth the wait, some people obviously weren’t fans, but I thought he was worth every verse of hype.

doom4

doom3

doom2

Doom1

I was a bit skeptical of The Pharcyde in the 2 spot, but the newly reunited group of 4 MCs took to the stage with a fury and confidence not seen in years. Performing a playful set that featured the awesome “Passing Me By” and even a cover of “My Prerogative”, The Pharcyde definitely got and kept my attention their entire set. They even played the Gorillaz “Dirty Harry” for the part when Romye Robinson could come in and absolutely tear up the mic. That track put the biggest smile on my face I had nearly all day.

Pharcyde4

Pharcyde3

pharcyde1

But the Night was closing in… and we all knew what that meant…

16 year old girls singing about hangovers and ugliness. Atmosphere. It’s year two for these guys as headliners, and it’s year two that the entire state seemed to go nuts for Minneapolis icons Slug and Ant. Backed by their full band, Atmosphere demanded every person’s attention as the sun fell behind the distant bluffs. From “God Loves Ugly” to the more recent Life Gives You Lemons material, their set was one that the crowd eager with anticipation all day was beyond ready to jam to. It was a safer bet to put money on them closing with “Sunshine” than it was to bet any horse at Canterbury all weekend, so their set was a little disappointing in a way too. I think I was just disgusted by the four suburban hispter/scenester/god awfully annoying girls in neon singing along as they walked out of the park. Atmosphere is on an entirely different level. Their fame, their popularity, their draw is so far beyond everyone at Soundset. It’s amazing to see and hear the crowd as they took the stage. As much as we might come to hate them after a while, Minneapolis hip-hop, Rhymesayers, and Soundset would cease to exist beyond  half-baked ideas without them. 

Slug 1

Ant 2

Atmosphere Band

MORE PICTURES HERE!

So there it is, a lengthy recap of Soundset ’09. Sorry if you missed it, and hope you loved it if you were there. I’ve got Part 2 (videos) coming tomorrow, but until then… ENJOY!

The Gang

“Hey Homies!”

Advertisements

Final Soundset Lineup Announced

Posted in Music News with tags , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , on Thursday, April 16, 2009 by Tim Althaus

soundset09logo

Thank you to the fine people over at HipHopDX we now finally have the unabridged list of Soundset performers. There are a few more that I was hoping for but as the Rolling Stones say, “You can’t always get what you want”. I’m still happy that I’m going to get to see a lot of great artists on May 24th. Go get your tickets now, and the folks at Mind Inversion will see you there. Follow me after the jump for the complete lineup. Continue reading

Substance’s Jim Forrey interviewed by Cake In 15 about Manifestation

Posted in Concert Dates with tags , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , on Thursday, March 26, 2009 by Ryan Buege

As I discussed earlier this month, Substance is making their “official” introduction as an organization tomorrow night, Friday March 27th, with the Manifestation concert at First Ave. In anticipation of the show, the guys at Cake in 15 were able to talk to Substance co-founder Jim Morrey to get the low-down on what Substance is all about. Read it all here!

“The word “manifestation” shares a root with “manifestazioni”, the Italian word for “protest”.  Both come from the Latin ”manifestus”, literally, “struck by the hand”, as in, “to forge” or “to make known”.  It is an apt title for the second show put on by Substance, a non-profit booking and promotions company with a mission to blend the audiences of music and progressive political issues.  Their first concert was the Ripple Effect concert during the Republican National Convention which garnered attention when Rage Against The Machine went out into the crowd to play after being told by the authorities to shut down.

Providence, R.I. rapper Sage Francis headlines Manifestation in the First Avenue Mainroom this Friday 3/27, with support from Cecil Otter, B. Dolan, Building Better Bombs and The God Damn Doo Wop Band.  Beyond the music, expect lots of groups to have information and a “Manifest Station”, a networking hub for progressive issues.  Cake In 15 caught up with Substance co-founder Jim Forrey to talk about civil disobedience, accumulating debt and the value of art.”

(keep reading)

Soundset ’09

Posted in Music News with tags , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , on Monday, March 16, 2009 by Tim Althaus

Soundset '09

On Sunday, May 24, 2009, Rhymesayers Entertainment and Rose Presents brings you the second annual Soundset: the official Midwest kick-off festival of the summer with over eight hours of the best independent Hip Hop music in one day. It all goes down at Canterbury Park in Shakopee, MN (rain or shine).
This is the first round of artists we are announcing, this IS NOT the final lineup.

What fun would it be to tell you everything right away?

Confirmed to perform on the Soundset main stage are:
Atmosphere, MF Doom, Brother Ali, Sage Francis with B. Dolan, Immortal Technique, P.O.S, El P featuring Mr.
Dibbs, Eyedea & Abilities, Abstract Rude and I Self Devine
.

Ticket information is already available, and the festival is only two months away. It’s all after the jump… Continue reading

Substance makes “official” introduction with Manifest Station concert on March 27

Posted in Concert Dates with tags , , , , , , , , , , , , , on Thursday, March 12, 2009 by Ryan Buege

Substance, the Minneapolis based progressive arts, activism, and action organization that brought us the unforgettable Ripple Effect concert outside the capital during the RNC, has announced plans for their first followup to the Ripple Effect. While it’s pretty much impossible for them to top the RE lineup (that featured such amazing appearances as Dead Prez, Michael Franti, Anti-Flag, and the infamous RATM acappella set that sparked a much larger march to the RNC gates), Substance has admittedly done an amazing job to put together a praiseworthy collection of performing artists for the Manifest Station event that will take place at First Avenue on March 27th. As they recently announced, the ever-gracious Sage Francis has signed on to headline this very reasonably priced event, and support is set to be provided by a variety of (mostly) local hip-hop heavyweights; so far the list includes the P.O.S. fronted modern hardcore punk band Building Better Bombs, B. Dolan, Cecil Otter of Doomtree, and the God Damn Doo Wop Band. Not to mention, if you arrive early enough you’ll be able to catch a Cecil Otter headlined local pre-show with The Battle Royale and El Guante,  and Big Cats at the 7th St. Entry! And the crazy Rage Against the Machine performance was never announced, so who knows if the Substance guys have anything else crazy up their sleeves for this event… you’ll just have to attend to find out. Visit ManifestStation.org for all the details!

Basic Info: Friday, March 27th, 2009 at First Avenue, Minneapolis; 18+ (Main Room), $13 in advance, $15 door, 8pm; 7th St. Entry Pre-show, All Ages $7