So i played my first show ever in Des Moines last night (w/ Truthmaze, See More Perspective, Case the Joint and Maxilla Blue). Didn't really know what to expect from the venue, from the other acts or from the experience in general, but it ended up being on that "hip hop is so beautiful" tip-- great crowd, beautiful music and amazing people. Sometimes you can find all that in some rather unlikely places.
Traveled down there with e. g. bailey, Truthmaze and See More Perspective. Got some crazy footage of the sunset over the vast, flat, frozen wasteland that is southern MN and norther IA-- looked like Tattooine with only one sun. It was just as pretty as any sunset i've seen in Hawaii or anywhere. Anyways, it's nice to notice stuff like that when you're traveling. It can't all be about setlists and ten syllable rhymes and scene politics. I'll post that footage once it makes its way into a youtube clip.
The show itself was at the Vaudeville Mews, an archetypal grimey, dark, personality-filled bar/club. It took a minute for people to get there, but we ended up with a big, boisterous crowd, even a crew of b-boys and b-girls. In the middle of Iowa. And they were HOT. A few show photos, courtesy of e. g. bailey:
See More Perspective-- they're not the right style of pyramids in terms of architecture, but they'll do:
Here's the always-incredible Truthmaze:
Here's me. Apparently i've developed a kinetic stage persona and move around too much to photograph well with our little camera. Here's the best one i found:
And finally, this is Maxilla Blue:
Maxilla Blue was probably the most pleasant surprise i've had at a show since seeing Gigantic Mechanics in St. Cloud. See More said it best: "these days, you can find incredible hip hop EVERYWHERE. It really doesn't matter where you're from." This group was polished, had monstrous beats (courtesy of Aeon Grey), hot lyrics and a hell of a stage show. If you're on MySpace you should add them now.
Hopefully we'll be making Des Moines a regular stop on our trips.
I'm really excited about our crew helping to spin this web over the midwest, networking with amazing artists who are outside of the established circuit, really building a community based on more than business. As easy as it is to hate on some of the trends within indie and underground hip hop, shows like this one make me remember how much positivity and potential there really is underneath it all.