I have been following Bugzy Malone for years I have always found his music to be gritty, straightforward, emotional and full of punch which has made him an infamous name on the UK’s grime scene. Being from Manchester myself I have always found The King of The North to truly represent what being a proud Mancunian is, his music greatly represents in what direction the city’s music scene is going in. Upon seeing that he had two action packed nights during this years Warehouse Project I was sure to head down, this was the first time I would be seeing him in a large venue as the Mayfield depot would be hosting in conjunction with Manchester International Festival (MIF).
Walking into the former train station turned rave you were met with a booming sound that vibrated through the room, an otherworldly cloud of smoke and mesmerising lighting and visuals. The atmosphere was electric and brimming with excitement, I thought to myself that this is what The Warehouse Project should be. The main stage was eagerly awaiting us, it enticed you straight to the heart of the room, we were all ready.
Rich Reason and Ambush set the vibes right, bringing the pumping bass, hyping up the audience with grime classics and teasing us with slick beats and edgy lyrics, they sent a electric buzz through the entire room and kept the hungry crowd at bay. As 10pm struck the 0161 representative himself walked on to the stage, the atmosphere changed, it became very serious very quick. His presence alone made everyone go into a screaming frenzy before the music even started, they made sure he knew that they were all here to see him. Performing tunes from his newest album B. Inspired, he started off with ‘Done His Dance’. Starting off strong I was excited, no playing around. The bass was endless as it kept resonating through your heart, his vocals were raw and hypnotizing, everyone was at the whim of his talent. Transitioning into each song flawlessly my top ones for the evening had to be ‘Run’, ‘Memory Lane’ and of course ‘Ordinary People’, a song dedicated to Manchester and Mancunians who saw J.P Cooper himself making an appearance. His voice synced in perfectly with Bugzy’s to create a hauntingly beautiful live performance in which the entire crowd was singing along to. I find that his words are always poetic, awe inspiring and thoughtful, each word echoed throughout the room and hit you in the face with Northern grittiness that only would be expected of him to deliver.
As time was coming to the end I was pleased to hear that ‘Warning’ was dropped as his closing tune and this great remix of Ripgroove’s ‘Double 99’ infamous UKG track coupled with fiery lyrics left each and every one of us hyped up. The Mancunian artist definitely left a lasting impression and ensured that the evening was unforgettable. As the lights dropped and the man himself walked off stage the crowd were uncontrollable and thrown into a pool of adrenaline as the laughter, singing and dancing didn’t end. Bugzy displayed great emotion and determination and even took a bit of his time to thank each and every one of his fans who have supported him over the years. I find that whichever grime maestro that it is on stage, you can really and truly see their gratitude toward their fans, expressing massive thanks to everybody who had supported them, this evening was of no exception. This is why he is so loved, the dedication he gives to both his music and his listeners is why he will remain on top as one of the UK’s best grime artists. The only complaint of the entire evening is that the king himself only played for one hour, and a set so short had truly left the audience on a high - however, this can only mean that his next tour will only see more support and excitement.
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