Purple is my favorite color, but Blu is one of my favorite spitters. Thus, I jumped on the chance to see him along with the duo of TiRon and Ayomari at The Roxy last Sunday. Yes, on a Sunday night. Talk about giving a middle finger to the work week.
Shout out to Mario for saving the day with wristbands, since I was lost in the sea of “names that are supposed to be on the guest list.” I strolled in around 9:45 to see the group, Nu Era on stage. Now the most important and constantly underrated employee in a concert is the person manning the sound booth. The balance between treble and bass is pivotal for a rapper’s lyrics getting through to the crowd unless you’re someone who has fans that know your songs by heart. Opening acts often don’t have that luxury, so I will say, that I have no idea what they were saying.
Since the bass was really pounding over the vocals, I will say that the production sounded good for the Northwest-based rap collective as they bounced around the stage. Luckily, we have this thing called the Internet to let us find music, and in hindsight, I do like these guys. Turtle T is the frontman leading the Nu Era movement and you can find all of their music here.
Trew Uno is the voice of the SB Hooliganz (the SB stands for Stay Blunted) but I couldn’t tell what he was saying either. But, he was the only one who jumped into the crowd during part of his set. With a gangster lean, Trew has this authenticity about his image that makes me believe whatever he was saying. Once again, the internet wins with helping us hear his lyricism.
Now this is a group I enjoyed. M.A.R.S. is a group that has a melodic quality to their flow while being high energy to get the crowd going. The bad part is that I can find no information about any of their music. So, unless I can get an edit from their PR later, here are a bunch of pictures of them.
Bebe O’Hare wasn’t on the lineup, but was a pleasant surprise representing Chi-town. She reminds me a lot of Rocky Rivera or Nitty Scott, with her gritty delivery and inferred swagger that helps push her words across to the audience. Boom bap is still alive. Follow her here.
The only thing better than a good rapper is one who also produces his music and does it well. Nemo Achida is as smooth as he looks and his laidback flow makes his music an easy listen. Check out his music here.
Finally, TiROn and Ayomari took the stage. I loved their EP, “A Sucker For Pumps” but always missed them when they were in town. Now, the hardest thing about being a duo is balance. Just like the treble and the bass, you don’t want to overpower your partner. Synchronicity is an understatement as to how perfect these two perform together. Every word was heard and every feeling was translated through their presence. I can’t stress enough about how good this was. Follow TiRon and Ayomari.
The veteran finished things off, performing songs from his latest release, “No York” and a few classics from his collaborations with MED and Exile. But, since Exile wasn’t his DJ for the night, it was mostly his solo project stuff. Blu‘s treble was a bit too low and the bass overpowered him on the set, so it wasn’t as good as I would have wished, but since I knew most of the songs it wasn’t as big an issue. He has discussed retiring soon, but hasn’t shown any signs of slowing as evident by two songs that released this week.
Thanks to The Roxy for having us and Mario for saving me at the last second.