A wave of US hip-hop stars come crashing into the capital next month, with The Beatnuts, Blu & Exile and Jeru The Damaja all set to share the stage at The Garage, London on Wednesday 15th February.
Writing rhymes with a distinct Latin flavour since the early nineties, The Beatnuts have brought a burst of energy to New York’s rap scene with each of their releases. Known for jazz laden production and sharp word play that cuts through their lively instrumentals, the pairing has gone on to work with some of the most formidable artists in the game while penning some of the best known party tracks of the past two decades.
The second duo on the bill, Blu & Exile, have taken a much more modest route in establishing themselves to the hip-hop faithful. Surfacing in the late 2000s, Blu & Exile emerged as stand out figures from the deepest corners of underground hip-hop following the release their debut LP Below The Heavens in 2007. Brandishing clean cut samples and a neo-hip-hop writing style, the paring fabricates classily tinged hip-hop from the near future that effortless glides from record to the live stage.
A name familiar with anyone with a slight interest in hip-hop, Jeru The Damaja makes for a formidable addition to any lineup. The New York MC first came to relevance through The Gang Starr Foundation, and soon showed why he was worthy of being blessed with instrumentals from DJ Premier on LPs The Sun Rises In The East and Wrath Of The Math. Straight talking with a mercurial flow, Jeru’s hard edged storytelling sets him aside from rappers of the same ilk, and will no doubt raise the temperature in the room when he appears in London this coming February.
Further support on the night comes from Dag Savage, Choosey and Mr Thing.
Words by Elliot Ryder
Photos courtesy of Jeru The Damaja