Student-friendly Hip-Hop night New Bohemia returned to The Faversham in time for the new academic year with a strong line-up of local acts that bodes well for the coming season. They've now got a semi-regular arrangement with the boys at Leeds Hip-Hop Scene which will see some new talent getting slots to complement the First Word roster plus of course the usual big UK names such as Jehst, who will be making an appearance on the 21st.
Hosting the night behind the decks was resident DJ Kidkanevil. I've sung the praises of this guy often enough that you should know the drill by now – top tunes (initially with a strong reggae vibe) and flawless scratching without any "look-at-me-I'm-a-turntablist" ego on show.
The first live act were Monkey See Monkey Do, an experimental / improvisational band touching the usual soul, funk, jazz bases with admirable clarity and inventiveness. In the best possible way, it would have actually been pretty hard to guess that this was an improv outfit, so tight was there playing. I was also well pleased to see an appearance by MC ABD – a definite rising star of the Yorkshire scene, hugely entertaining on stage and justifiably associated with more crews and bands than you'd think plausible.
Next were Dr Knox – Malaki on the rhymes and Wisdomtooth on the laptop beats and mic back-ups. It was great to see the chemistry of these two on stage once they hit their stride and my only quibble half-way through the set was that I might have liked to see a little variety in the form of a guest MC or two. Those mind-reading lessons Wiz has been taking must have paid off, because it wasn't long before he was inviting fellow Watchmen member MC Nomad and the aforementioned ABD on stage for the last tune. Definitely something I'd like to see more of… all three MCs were excellent and played off each other well.
Finally, INC wrecked the set as I knew he would. I'd categorise him as a technical / battle MC in the traditional UK mould but not in such a way as to imply any lack of individuality or presence – his flows are nothing but superb and he held the stage down well without support other than Wisdomtooth running beats for him.
As a sneaky plug I should mention that INC appeared on my latest show on HHBRadio.com, which will be up for streaming and download shortly. Also I'm sure he'd like me to mention that his night Vagabondz will be on at The Faversham this coming Tuesday, 18th September, featuring a headline appearance by Gentleman's Dub Club.
That's it for now…