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London show review. Anticon All Stars show. 6/15/03
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Sage Francis
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Joined: 30 Jun 2002
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London show review. Anticon All Stars show. 6/15/03  Reply with quote  

http://www.google.ch/search?q=cache:j0eLxrH9LZkJ:www.drownedinsound.com/articles/7300.html+sage+francis+anticon+all+stars&hl=de&ie=UTF-8

Review by Michael Diver


Themselves, Sage Francis and Sole

the venue: London King's X Scala
the date: Sun 15th Jun 2003
I’m in no position to claim that I know anything about hip hop. I’m white, middle-class (I guess, even if I am broke as fuck), and my record collection consists primarily of hardcore bands that go ‘errRRAAGGHHhh!’ a lot, and some where they don’t so much. My hip hop knowledge is thus: Public Enemy are good – seen ‘em, liked ‘em, threw up outside in a flower bed; Northern State are pretty good right now – seen ‘em, liked them, didn’t drink half enough to come close to repeating my actions at Public Enemy. Oh, and I hear some band called The Beastie Boys are pretty fly with white kids like me, but to be honest, from here it looks like every Caucasian b-boy from Barnet to Bromley is in The Scala to pay homage to three of (alternative and predominantly white hip hop label) anticon’s best acts, and they’re BOOMING!

Okay, now let’s drop the colour thing; you and me know that in music colour of skin, religion, whatever, is irrelevant compared to the music. It’s why we love it – it transcends all. Opener Sole (aka Tim Holland) really has a hang up on certain issues though, most noticeably Blair and Bush’s recent knees-up in the Middle East. Now, don’t get me wrong, but there’s only so many times you can hear the same shit before the record gets worn out and tossed in the garbage, and Sole comes remarkably close to being yesterday’s news with his repeated tirades against this political injustice and that governmental wrongdoing. "It doesn’t matter who you vote for/the government still gets in" he says. Really? You’re shitting me. He’s far better when addressing his less globally relevant hang-ups through his intricate and speedy raps, with ‘Da Baddest Poet’ claiming, tongue in cheek, that "the white man is the baddest poet". Better still is his warning that big brother is always watching you, ‘Tokyo’, containing the ‘Watership Down’ inspired (but no less prophetic perhaps) line "Run rabbit, because when they catch you they’ll kill you". In an age when we get our kicks from watching grown people acting like giant hamsters in a cage, performing tricks for tins of beans, Sole’s fingers are well and truly on the public pulse. It’s just a shame that he fills the gaps between songs with unintentionally patronising remarks, as songs like ‘Plutonium’ ("get your picket signs/go on strike/get a five cent rise/you’re a champion") and ‘Selling Live Water’ ("living like ghosts in this globe we can’t run from") are received like he’s the ‘baddest’ shit since bread came sliced.

It’s also a shame for him that Sage Francis steps up and blows him away. Sandwiched between two of hip hop’s lesser known names (Sage is by far the biggest of the current anticon crop, having just signed a deal with Epitaph), he begins his solo set (Sole was backed by Themselves on instrument duty) by battling his shoe, eyes bulging from their sockets like his head is in a vice, yet retaining an intensity unlike any other act of the night. He waves an American flag about his head, with the stars replaced by the logos of major corporations ranging from the Playboy bunny to the infamous golden arches; he stands on a chair, pointing his mic stand like a machine gun; he is an enigma. There’s no doubt about it, Sage is perhaps the most exciting live performer I’ve seen since, um, I saw him last time in some dank basement off Old Street. The aforementioned BOOMS! are reserved solely (boom boom) for him, and it’s exactly what he deserves. ‘Crack Pipes’ is amazing, and receives sing-along treatment from the hip hop heads down the front, whose adoration is openly appreciated by a shy in-between songs Sage. "I’m a real underground rapper/my hit quality sucks/my records are warped/and my CD skips" he claims on ‘Different’, but it’s unlikely to be the case for long, as numbers like ‘Specialist’ are full of more promise than an eleven year old David Beckham. "She wants to dance to my pulse/but I’ve got heart murmurs" he says, but it’s him making our hearts skip a beat as our body struggles to catch up with what our ears and eyes are taking in. He is, simply put, incredible.

Inevitably, headliners Themselves don’t match the heights reached by Sage’s all-too-brief set. That said, any group that contains members of the acclaimed cLOUDDEAD is obviously worthy of sticking around for, and they prove to be just that. Not as straight-up as either Sole or Sage, Themselves’ weird hip-hop-meets-performance-art takes some getting used to, but once you’re in the zone, it’s the best fun you can imagine having with your socks still on. Their recent album, ‘The No Music’, was rapturously received by dance, hip hop and rock press alike, the reason being that, going back to my second paragraph, music like this transcends not only race, religion and politics, but genre pigeonholes too. I’ll confess; I didn’t catch any of the song titles, but the performance alone was such that it made me rush to buy ‘The No Music’ (containing the brilliantly anti-gangsta line "shove that gun up your ass") the very next day, which, if you’re looking for recommendations, is a pretty dang good one.

So, that was anticon. Mostly white guys, playing some of the best hip hop these ears have heard, although I’ll freely admit that I’m no expert. But I am left excited by this music that I previously knew very little about, and you can bet your bottom shilling/cent that I’ll be BOOMING with the rest of the crowd the next time these guys roll into town.
Post Fri Jul 04, 2003 4:12 pm
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hugh grants hooker
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nice review. he described it exactly how i imagined it would be.
Post Fri Jul 04, 2003 5:27 pm
 
Jesus Frank



Joined: 12 Jul 2002
Posts: 2295
Location: Stockholm, Sweden
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tape quality
Post Fri Jul 04, 2003 11:01 pm
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the Wiper



Joined: 28 Jan 2003
Posts: 523
Location: Kent State University
Re: London show review. Anticon All Stars show. 6/15/03  Reply with quote  

Sage Francis wrote:
There’s no doubt about it, Sage is perhaps the most exciting live performer I’ve seen since, um, I saw him last time


1. man knows what he's talking about.

2. i'd like to see this 'corporate' flag.

3. way to steal the show sage.
Post Sat Jul 05, 2003 3:14 pm
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naught



Joined: 01 Jul 2002
Posts: 427
Re: London show review. Anticon All Stars show. 6/15/03  Reply with quote  

the Wiper wrote:

2. i'd like to see this 'corporate' flag.


Post Sat Jul 05, 2003 10:02 pm
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extraordinary_average



Joined: 01 Jul 2003
Posts: 32
Location: bellow the redwoods
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what a nerdy review. I just get high at shows. Isn't that cool?[/quote]
Post Mon Jul 07, 2003 12:28 am
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the Wiper



Joined: 28 Jan 2003
Posts: 523
Location: Kent State University
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know what's fucking crazy?

i click 'print image' on that flag, and it prints, only with no logos, just the normal stars.

wierd.
Post Mon Jul 07, 2003 4:30 am
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WhyDoTheyCallMeSEEN?



Joined: 07 Jul 2003
Posts: 2
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the Wiper wrote:
know what's fucking crazy?

i click 'print image' on that flag, and it prints, only with no logos, just the normal stars.

wierd.


Oh, because its a GIF image, the stars appear first then the corporate images show up. I wonder how you can disect the frames. It doesnt even work on adobe photoshop. Pretty crazy. I wuz gunna print it out and wave it around like a MAD MAN! darn
Post Mon Jul 07, 2003 9:13 am
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Jesus Frank



Joined: 12 Jul 2002
Posts: 2295
Location: Stockholm, Sweden
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the Wiper wrote:
know what's fucking crazy?

i click 'print image' on that flag, and it prints, only with no logos, just the normal stars.

wierd.

WhyDoTheyCallMeSEEN? wrote:
because its a GIF image, the stars appear first then the corporate images show up.


*cries and ereases my conspiracy thesis that i was just about to post*
Post Mon Jul 07, 2003 12:27 pm
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Motzarooney



Joined: 20 Oct 2002
Posts: 139
Location: baltimore
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WhyDoTheyCallMeSEEN? wrote:


I wonder how you can disect the frames. It doesnt even work on adobe photoshop. Pretty crazy. I wuz gunna print it out and wave it around like a MAD MAN! darn


open up the gif file and press "print scrn" button on your keyboard (usually on the top right of your keyboard, if it exists). Then open up windows paint and click edit>paste. The flag will be there, along with the rest of your computer screen at the time. Take the crap out, keep the flag, print that ish, and have at it.
Post Mon Jul 07, 2003 5:40 pm
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WhyDoTheyCallMeSEEN?



Joined: 07 Jul 2003
Posts: 2
AH  Reply with quote  

RIGHT-O. I got you. Thanks. cya. ok. good. ya.
Post Tue Jul 08, 2003 12:21 am
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maxamillion



Joined: 05 Sep 2002
Posts: 1040
Location: The Netherlands
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Jesus Frank wrote:
the Wiper wrote:
know what's fucking crazy?

i click 'print image' on that flag, and it prints, only with no logos, just the normal stars.

wierd.

WhyDoTheyCallMeSEEN? wrote:
because its a GIF image, the stars appear first then the corporate images show up.


*cries and ereases my conspiracy thesis that i was just about to post*




HAHAHAHA!!!!!!
Post Thu Jul 10, 2003 6:18 am
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ziko



Joined: 21 Apr 2003
Posts: 4
Location: england
London, Scala  Reply with quote  

Forgive the belated message, but having born witness to that evening- I too have to say it was the nuts. As I sit coincidentally in the very same t-shirt, to which I bought from none other than mr holland himself, doing his stint on the merch' dept. I reminisce upon how much we marvelled.

Having hit these shores, the Sick/ Still Sick recordings are coming up trumps too. All word and all play!
Post Wed Jul 16, 2003 11:50 am
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