Live Reviews

El-P – Live

Dan Le Sac v Scroobious Pip

“Who likes UK hip hop?” said Scroobious Pip from under his trucker cap. “Well we don’t because its shit.” Now, I didn’t like this talentless waster before the set started and as soon as he said that, the opinion was cemented.

Furthermore, slating chart music whilst you’re in them yourself and clearly reaping the rewards of it, makes you a hypocritical oaf. Yes, I said it, oaf. Besides all this, the beats were awful and the rapping reminded me of Sole – absolutely no cadence whatsoever. My mate said Pip was “UK Anticon” and I have to agree. Gutted.

Enough wasted words on him, the stage was finally set for El Producto to reign supreme. As the intro to Tasmanian Pain Coaster began with Mr Dibbs on the decks, a live guitarist and keyboard player flanking him on either side and The Mighty Quin providing the hype man duties, all decked out in camo with face-covering balaclavas, El’s voice could be heard to the side.

As soon as the beat came in, an orange boiler suited El, complete with blood all over his face, bounded on stage and let rip. Flowing straight into Smithereens, El got the crowd as hyped as possible until he unleashed the anthem – Deep Space 9mm.

Hearing the infamous Rawkus line [if you don’t know it, get googling!] sent the packed out Dingwalls into a frenzy and from that point on there was no let up. The set consisted mostly of the new album I’ll Sleep When You’re Dead, which was absolutely fine considering it’ll be a hard push to top that album this year. Up All Night got the entire crowd jumping, Flyentology got us singing and the booming basslines of Run The Numbers and Drive just whipped up the atmosphere even further.

Hearing Stepfather Factory live was something of a highlight, as he didn’t perform it last time I saw him, and I wasn’t let down as it was every bit as furiously cynical live as it is on record. Towards the end of the set we were treated to the brilliantly titled Poisenville Kids with the capacity crowd filling in the Cat Power parts and “woo”ing the chorus back at the New Yorker. And by coming back on for a second time and playing Fantastic Damage‘s awesome Tuned Mass Damper, El had given us the most complete, compelling, sweat-inducing and bone aching set he possibly could.

When he ended the night by saying he had not had a show as good as this for ages, despite the fact he probably said it on every date of the tour, you believed him. Deep Space 9mm son, keep smilin’.

Photos by Zac Slack.