Archive for Soundset

Soundset 2012 Announced!

Posted in Concert Dates, News with tags , , , , , , , , , , on Monday, March 5, 2012 by Tim Althaus

Sorry for the delay in my posting lately folks, but I’ve been swamped in my personal life. Anyways, I was at work today when I got about 3 different text messages pertaining to this year’s Soundset Festival in Shakopee, MN. Let me tell you right now, my heart dropped when I saw this lineup; it is utterly fantastic. I went to the initial reincarnation of Soundset in 2008, and it’s one of the best concerts I’ve ever been to. I also went in 2009, but I haven’t been back since because I wasn’t as enthused about the lineup as I had been in past years.

This year they have truly outdone themselves; I can’t even express how excited I am about this lineup. Some of the artists (just to name a few) include Atmosphere (as always), Aesop Rock, Evidence, Big K.R.I.T., Ghostface Killah & Raekwon, Danny Brown, DJ Premier, Kendrick Lamar, hometown heroes Audio Perm and more. Tickets will be on sale this Saturday, March 10th at 11AM, and I can assure you I will be picking up a VIP ticket stat. General admission is going to be $41, and VIP will be $90. I hope to see you all there!

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P.O.S. on Cinemax, Max Tour Stories

Posted in Media, Video with tags , , , , on Friday, July 17, 2009 by Tim Althaus

The people at Cinemax caught up with Stef at this year’s Soundset Festival in Shakopee and got some good footage. In the first part of the video Stef talks about the name “P.O.S.” and what it could be an acronym for, and how he got the name. He also talks about the roots of his influence and the nature of his beats. It’s great to know that guys like Stef take a lot of influence from their fans, because those are the best kinds of artists. In part 2 of the video P.O.S. discusses what he feels like when he’s on stage, what it was like growing up in Minneapolis without a major label and why he makes music that sounds different than your regular boom bap Hip-Hop. Follow me after the jump to catch part 2. Continue reading

Album Review: Toki Wright, A Different Mirror

Posted in Music Reviews with tags , , , , , , , on Monday, July 13, 2009 by Tim Althaus

Toki Wright I say this all the time but, I feel so great being from Minnesota because Minneapolis is a mad music machine that keeps churning out great homeland talent. Toki Wright is a perfectly prime example of what I previously stated. I’ve seen Toki at just about every Hip-Hop event I’ve ever been to in Minneapolis, so for that reason alone he will always be a pivotal stamp in Twin Cities Hip-Hop. I got the chance to see Toki at this year’s Soundset, and I was very impressed when I saw him perform his solo material. His new album, A Different Mirror, is a great example of a hungry emcee deliberately devouring the microphone on every track. The beats on this album accent Toki’s violent and vicious flow perfectly, and Toki’s witty wordplay is highly infectious. Continue reading

Immortal Technique Takes Over the Highline Ballroom

Posted in Media, Video with tags , , , on Monday, June 22, 2009 by Tim Althaus

Vodpod videos no longer available.

If none of you out there have ever seen this guy perform, I am telling you that you are truly missing out on something that will move you. Thanks to 2DopeBoyz, I was able to catch this video of Immortal getting on stage with Green Lantern and performing a few tracks. He performs “Point of No Return”, a fucking jaw dropping acapella and the track “The 3rd World” (off of his most recent LP of the same name). As I mentioned in my Soundset post, this guy has the most raw energy I’ve ever seen on a stage. Do yourself a favor and watch this video, you may feel moved…

Peter Parker “Exposes” Jake One, Freeway & Brother Ali @ Soundset 2009

Posted in Media, Video with tags , , , , on Tuesday, June 2, 2009 by Tim Althaus

Here is some good interview footage from Soundset this year that comes courtesy of Mr. Peter Parker. He had the chance to catch up with Freeway & Jake One, as well as Brother Ali backstage at Soundset. The first one (obviously) is of Jake One & Freeway and you can follow me after the jump for Brother Ali’s footage. Continue reading

From The Rail: Soundset ’09 Part 2 (Videos)

Posted in From The Rail, Mind Inversion Exclusive, Video with tags , , , , , , , , , on Tuesday, May 26, 2009 by Erik Burg

crowd1A weekend that’s already been heralded by me once, Soundset 2009 brought some of the best hip-hop talent in the nation together in one spot, in our own quaint little Minnesota non-the-less. Yesterday I brought you some amazing pictures I caught from my usual front row spot, and today I’m back to give you some videos from the festival (Part 1 if you missed it). The audio on them isn’t amazing simply due to the sheer volume of the stage, but bear with and enjoy!

I had been waiting years to see El-P, and when he took the stage with DJ Mr. Dibbs Sunday at Canterbury I knew that something amazing was about to happen. Opening with “Tasmanian Pain Coaster” was stunning, but when El-P played “Up All Night” and Dibbs cut on the tables for a good six minutes during it my jaw nearly hit the floor. Check out the couple verses El get through and then watch the madness ensue as Dibbs proves once again why he is one of the best DJs out there. Feast on this sampling!

As I mentioned in Part 1 of my column, P.O.S. has been making tons of headlines for Rhymesayers this year, dropping the spectacular Never Better this winter and tearing it up on tour with Atmosphere all year. When the man of many instruments took the stage Sunday afternoon he unleashed a furry within the crowd that had been unmatched to that point. The high point of his set came when he brought both Dessa and Cecil Otter on stage to perform “Low Light Low Life” off of the aforementioned Never Better. It’s my personal favorite off of the album, and was everything I expected it to be live. There are some great shots of the crowd going crazy during the video as well, so hit play and watch one of the better tracks all day at the main stage of Soundset.

Naysayers aside, I thought that seeing MF Doom play was the highlight of the festival. It’s such a rarity these days, and the elaborate and sometimes comical nature of it all made his appearance and performance well worth the entire ticket price. After the real Villain finally took to the mic I got video of nearly every one of his tracks, seeing as I never wanted to forget what the masked man brought to the un-expecting crowd. The reception of Doom was terrible, and I’m slightly bitter at the crowd for that, but whatever, his new tracks were awesome live. Check out both “Ballskin” and “Gazzillion Ear” below. You’ll notice a slightly different view on the second video, as it was at that time that I jumped the fence and ended up going backstage to later meet Metal Fingers. At any rate though, Enjoy!

That’s all I got folks, I hope that you had as much fun at the fest as I did, and I hope you enjoyed these two columns as much as I enjoyed putting them together. 

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

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

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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!

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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.

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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.” 

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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….

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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.

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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.

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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. 

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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). 

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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.

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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.

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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. 

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

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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.

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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.

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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. 

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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!”