It’s no surprise the Forum is suitably packed for the first gig in something like 10 years for the laid back rhyme flows of Eric Sermon and Parrish Smith aka EPMD. They’ve been around since 1986 and despite falling out and not speaking for a few years have an impressive 7 albums under their belts as well as individual solo material from their time spent apart. DJ Scratch is on the turntables, he’s been with them since the second album, so it’s good to see the old line-up in place.
Support comes from UK hip hop veterans Rodney P and Skitz. Their set is a mixture of classics from
Rodney’s days with the London osse and newer material from his last album. It’s a good tight set, the Riddim Killa on good form as he blasts through old familiar tunes like “Money Mad”. A good support slot.
DJ Scratch takes his place behind the turntables and hypes up the crowd for the appearance of the MCs. As soon as they hit the stage they launch into “It’s my thing” from their 1988 album “Strictly Business”, leading to a great response from the already hyped up crowd. They then do that annoying thing of performing a verse each then stopping the song. Much as I was looking forward to the gig I had a feeling it would be like this. They’ve recorded several albums together and haven’t played over here for ages but still only do a 60 minute show, cutting short all the tunes I really wanted to hear.
In an age where Public Enemy play for 3 hours plus and KRS1 easily does over 2 hours, I just find it lazy that MCs with a pedigree who’ve been around for ages and have lots of material fob us off with a one hour show. The rest of the set is good but it’s all much too short. Running through a verse or two of a classic track just doesn’t really cut it live for me but what I heard was good while it lasted.
The finish with a rowdy version of “Headbanger” which works well despite obviously not having the verses from Redman and K-Solo. All in all it’s an ok but not a great show just because it’s way too short.