JURASSIC 5 at the Reverb, August 21. Tickets: $20. Attendance: sold out. Rating: NNNN Rating: NNNN
Who knows what Jurassic 5 will be up to in five years? This year they collaborated with the Dave Matthews Band. Anything's possible. I mean, there could be a whole Joan Osborne duet LP in the works.
But even if the backpacker breakouts drop a double album featuring Counting Crows (or, fingers crossed, Sheryl Crow), people will never be able to shit on their show. As well as heart, last Monday night at the Reverb , Chali 2na , Soup , Akil , Mark 7 and DJ Nu-Mark put their backs, asses, minds, bodies and souls into it.
The atmosphere was perfect. Unanimous love from a sardine-packed venue guaranteed some serious kinetic energy. Often, the audience resembled the cover of J5's Power In Numbers album: a sea of outstretched arms waving in unison.
The songs Jurassic 5 did from that record, including If You Only Knew, A Day At The Races, What's Golden and I Am Somebody, were shown heavy love, as were their older-school bangers. Arms fell whenever they did anything from the new disc, Feedback, but even at their least familiar they're still incredible.
The charismatic Chali 2na, J5's de-facto star - tallest, most lyrically on point, with the deepest and most powerful voice - is a major reason why. This guy could break the most devastating news to you in his nimble, staccato flow and baritone register and you'd just nod to it with a big smile on your face.
The others aren't quite as stunning, but their flows are still rhythmically perfect and they all complement each other. They make it look so casual, but these guys make the tightest harmonies in hiphop. Toss in some robotic choreography, as they did on In The House (from Feedback), and you have pure magic.
Ugh, they also performed the Dave Matthews-featured Work It Out. The Nelly Furtado-assisted Thin Line would have been a way better call.
I'd also like to acknowledge the work of DJ Nu-Mark, who ran between a sampler, mixer and turntable all night, cutting the beat, dropping bass kicks and elements of beats, and scratching as needed.
They'll be back in November.