A security guard working at Boot & Saddle on Broad St. Friday night summed up the atmosphere better than I ever could.
The guard was speaking with a concert goer, and they were exchanging stories of having previously seen individual members of the Minnesota hip hop collective, Doomtree. The mentioned that he works shifts at other venues in town but specifically requested to work this evening to catch the hip hop group. The concert goer mentions that this wasn’t the only hip hop concert in Philly this particular evening as 50 Cent was headlining a show just up town.
The security guard laughed.
“That’s cartoons,” he said.
We all shared a laugh.
Open Mike Eagle wowed the crowd to a point where we were so mystified by the west coast lyricist, we frankly just forgot to clap. The dude can write, produce, and spit. His set was somewhat down tempo, as he simply reminded the Philly audience that there’s more to hip hop than just cartoons.
Nothing could prepare the room for the energy Doomtree brought. Dessa, Mike Mictlan, Lazerbreak, P.O.S., Cecil Otter, Paper Tiger & SIMS all have their individual careers, but come together now and then to form this powerful group. They all share an emotional wave and seemlessly go back and forth with their verses making it seem too natural to even require rehearsals.
For a couple hours, we were all outliers. Cast out to this little back room where seemingly no one else wanted to be. We were our own little club, those who know real art, real poets, and true, honest to god, hip hop with power and with a message. There was an air of, if you don’t know, we don’t really want you here. This was our night to share.
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