Thursday, November 17, 2011

Gig Review -Scroobius Pip wi White Noise 16/11/2011 , Whelan's , Dublin

It scarcely feels like more than a week or two since we were here, in this same spot in Whelan's , watching the hip hop magnificence of B .Dolan win over a sparse crowd , but here we are, ready for another night of intelligent fusion  hip hop to soothe our minds, move our feet and blow our minds courtesy of one Scroobius Pip, best known as one half of chart bothering alt-hip hop duo Dan Le Sac Vs Scroobius Pip.Tonight however is Pip's show, and a very different one it is indeed from what we're used to from the articulate Essex native.But more on that in a bit . ..

First up tonight though, subbing in for the aforementioned Dolan tonight is Irish beatboxer White Noise(5/10) , whose fun if somewhat rote set is sadly lost on all but the first few rows , as the excited and slightly impatient crowd chatter over him.Still, he's an affable sort of chap, giving us a brief lesson on beat technique in the process, but it 's nothing  we haven't seen before, and is hardly up there with the Dub Fx's  and Raziels of this world.

It's an odd feeling to see Scrooby sans the bobbing , affable head of Mr Le Sac, however, as tonight's energetic and  commanding performance proves , Pip on his own is just as electrifying a prospect.Playing a set culled pretty much from his recent effort 'Disasterpieces' , it's a far rockier, more aggressive and far more 'live' sound we get tonight , with live drums and surprisingly heavy live guitar beefing things up excellently, and adding an edge to Pip's quickfire  flow and fearsome stage presence.Opening up with the stark rant of 'Introdiction' ,tonight's set flows well enough, despite at times being overtaken somewhat by the main man's tendency to go overboard with the crowd banter , at times to the detriment of pacing of the set, and with a devoted crowd that would probably have paid the asking price for a set of Pip reading from the phone book, there is a feeling at times that he should perhaps spend less time firing off admittedly entertaining rants and joking with the crowd,and more time maybe well, playing songs ..  . .

Still though , as far as the music goes, there's little to complain about.Highlights of tonight include the scud missile assault of genius Soulja Boy pastiche'Soldier Boy (Kill Them)' which showcases Pip's knack of turning the brainless posturing of mainstream rap on it's head to subvert the genres most tiresome cliches.The rap rock  stomp of 'Death Of The Journalist' recalls RATM in full flight, before  lacklustre reunion tours killed that dream stone dead, while the lithe riffing and tongue twisting flow of 'Domestic Silence' and the tar black humour and bluesy guitar of 'The Struggle' provide fodder for the brain as well as the dancefloor.

There is a moment early on tonight which enscapulates Scroobius Pip's position in hip-hop's money obsessed canon. Encouraging people(only half joking one assumes) to 'throw money at him' if they choose to download his music , what follows is a barrage of  two euro coins onto the stage, which Pip unashamedly scrambles to pick up.Forever foraging for the truth and spilling your soul for a few  bits of loose change, this is the face of real underground hip hop these days , a DIY , no bull shit ethic that's maybe not pulling in the big bucks, but is far preferable to the auto tuned garbage  being shoved down our throats on a daily basis . . .

Rating: 7/10
Stephen O ' Connor

No comments:

Post a Comment