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On the wans and twos....

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Rigsy | 11:32 UK time, Friday, 3 June 2011



Bit of a hip-hop vibe about the place just at the moment, what with Eminem and Odd Future confirmed for day two of Vital last week. Local pranksters Olympic Lifts just recorded their third album and I can't get enough of this track by Kreayshawn, a Californian MC who gets on like MIA's bratty little sister. Then there's shows by the (admittedly hit and miss) Wu Tang Clan and Q-Tip to look forward to south of the boarder this summer (Tripod, July 1st and Button Factory, August 24th).


Anyway, prolonged spells of hip hop always lead to thoughts of Northern Ireland's own beats n' ryhme maestros - The Sirocco MCs, a daft trio from Derry City. Northern Irish hip hop shouldn't really work, but there was something brilliantly unhinged about EMCEEODEE, M3 and The Assassin (and it wasn't just their names). Live shows were gloriously silly affairs, proper old-skool hip hop performance almost always concluding with EMCEEODEE semi-naked - the removal of clothes in a public place seemingly very acceptable up in the Maiden City.

Thing was though, beneath the messy shows and vaguely ludicrous notion of a Derry hip hop trio in the first place, were a whole albums worth of cracker tunes. Debut album 'The Basics' is well worth tracking down - chocked full of brilliantly produced samples, sparkling ideas and battling MCs with an impressive flow. The album came out five years ago with the band knocking it on the head shortly after, but a handful of tunes remain on that myspace.

Life was so much simpler back in 2005....


UPDATE - we've been recommended the following celebration of Irish hip hop - happening in Belfast this Thursday!



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