Thursday, November 5, 2009

Swelling Members

Last night I had the chance to see my favorite hip-hop group, Swollen Members, perform at the Urban Lounge in Downtown SLC. I have loved the group since I first heard their album Bad Dreams two years ago, and I quickly learned to love their entire discography (their latest album is still under personal consideration.) Up until last night it seemed as though I was never going to be able to hear them live! They played at Urban in January, and I couldn't go because I wasn't old enough, and they were here again in August, but I was out of town; needless to say, my attendance was a long time coming. I was a little hesitant to see them perform, for fear that they would suck live and my previous love affair would be dashed. Also, their latest release Armed to the Teeth which dropped on November 27th, has not been my favorite album thus far, and I didn't want to see a performance based predominantly on the latest material. Anyyywwaayyyy, I pushed all of that aside, and bought the tickets. I forced my friend Ben (whom I enjoy as much as the band itself) to go with me!

We arrived at about 9:45 p.m. for the show, and there were three opening acts. The first opener is called Bliss N Esso, and they hail from Australia. Evaluating them in hip-hop vernacular I would dare say that they are "dope". After Bliss N Esso, an amazing duo that calls themselves Common Market performed, and I can say with total certainty that these guys are murderously dope, they were so good that I didn't care how long they performed! The last performers go by the name Big B & Dirtball, and I was secretly hoping that the emcee dropped dead on the stage, because it was not my style of music, at all. One of Big B's songs was called "White Trash Renegade," I do not play that game, and it killed my mood for the entire time they played the set. Ben and I were both recovering from a brutal Muay Thai class earlier in the evening and were starting to lag after the White Trash guy, and then, Rob The Viking came onto the stage! I immediately perked up and grabbed the waistband on Ben's jeans and shook him while squealing "That's Rob The Viking, their DJ!" Swollen bombed onto the stage at about Midnight, and they opened with the track "Blackout" from their fifth studio album, Black Magic. Instantly the entire crowd was jumping with hands in the air, rapping along with Mad Child and Prevail. Much to my satisfaction, the material that they performed was mostly from their old albums, and the new songs they did perform were some of my favorites. My absolute favorite song, "Too Hot" was performed in the middle of the set, and I don't think I have ever smiled so hard or sang so loud!!!

Prevail and Mad Child have some of the sickest flows that I have ever heard! They sound almost identical to their CDs, which we all know is hard to achieve, and both emcees possess a stage presence that is hard to rival. Joining them on stage was the newest member to Battle Axe family, Tre Nyce, and he also sounded amazing live.

So, the show is blowing my mind and every expectation, when they start performing the song "Breath." On the album, Monsters in the Closet, Nelly Furtado sings the chorus, but in her absence the crowd is filling in. And then, it happened... Prevail makes direct eye contact with me, and smiles! PREVAIL, AKA Cannonball Crush, AKA Prev 1 the Microphone Crippla!!! This extremely sexy and magnificently talented man SMILES AT ME, and proceeds to push over people to put his microphone in front of my mouth so that I can sing the chorus!!!!! Ben also helped to push me forward once he saw what was going on. I sang into his mic like I was never going to have vocal chords again! Then, when I thought it couldn't get any better, he crowd surfed over my head!!!! After the song ended, I grabbed Ben's shirt and screamed "That was the coolest thing that has ever happened to me!!!!" At that moment in time, I meant it, that was the coolest thing that had ever happened to me! I have not been able to make it through one hour of my day without reminding my co-workers that I sang into Prevail's microphone.

The concert ended, and I have never felt so pleased with a musical performance. Bentley and I went to Denny's and then he cuddled me to sleep at his house. Prev and Ben in the same night, how can a girl be so lucky?? I didn't bring my camera, but here are some pictures of the group in all of their glory...

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