Mr. Complex with El Da Sensei, L-Fudge, Subconscious and more, at the Opera House, December 7. Tickets: $20. Attendance: 300. Rating: NN
after thwarting the bouncer's attempts at petty tyranny (he couldn't get why a 34-year-old might not carry ID at all times), we entered the Opera House to find a bizarre scene. The consumers of hiphop in the scantily filled hall stood around looking bored -- weird considering they hadn't exactly paid chump change to get in.Local MC Subconscious had just begun his bout of old-school rhymin', and though it wasn't blowing anyone's oversized pants off, he turned out to be one of the lineup's more creative MCs.
The music was groovin', the crowd wasn't movin', and due to crappy sound, you couldn't hear anyone's croonin'.
There's no doubt that El Da Sensei, L-Fudge and Mr. Complex were the experienced pros of the whole affair, but still, even when the latter two teamed up with some decently choreographed movement, the vibe in the room stayed downbeat. Once in a while everyone snapped to attention when the above-mentioned MCs pleaded, "Make some noise." But (to quote the gentleman beside us), the audience seemed to be "stoned in their stoner worlds, and they think they're on the couch watching TV."
One of the few highlights of the floppin' fiasco occurred when feisty Miss Masia hosted a freestyle rap-off between two female audience members for a pair of shoes. And local music maker Moonstarr supplied the freshest beats to be heard all night.
What the event proved is that hiphop has been around for some time and has been done in many different ways. So if you dare to compare, get new or you're through.