Dizzee Rascal – Concorde 2, Brighton – 27th July 2007
Published on East’s website
Following a nomination that puts him in the running for winning a second Mercury Music prize, Dizzee Rascal takes his record label on tour, rounding it off at Brighton’s Concorde 2.
Dizzee began his Dirtee Stank label before his career took off, with the intention of “bridging the gap between indies, majors and the street.” This progression from underground MC to national recording artist and cross genre collaborator is reflected in Dizzee’s varied fanbase of hip indie kids and your more mainstream urban music lovers. The beautiful stained-glassed venue of the Concorde 2 quakes uneasily as DJ Semtex began the night, limbering them up for the long night ahead.
Dirtee Stank’s ‘hottest talent’, Newham Generals, provided secondary support, alongside DJ Tubby. If the official Dirtee Stank website claims are true, that Newham Generals are the “most exciting street talent the UK,” then unfortunately there is little hope left for the streets of the UK.
Trying to excite a disinterested crowd the trio rely heavily on audience participation and when they scream “Who wants to hear some new s**t?,” there is an audible groan among the crowd. With tedious, one-dimensional songs such as ‘Bell them Slags’ and ‘Wet it up’, the crowd quickly tire of the unbalanced talent.
With the arrival of Dizzee to the pumping strains of ‘Just a Rascal’, the previous acts and every other UK street act seemingly pale miserably in comparison. Dizzee’s energy and skill are unrivalled and the crowd know it, leaving the room vibrating. Masterfully executed, Dizzee’s set is compact and perfect, playing his best known material, to the delight of the energised crowd. Dizzee even handed out a moral lesson to the rowdy crowd, stopping during ‘Pussy’Ole (Old Skool)’ to try and break up a fight by encouraging the audience to chill out and have a dance.
Dizzee brought his own set to a close with a powerful performance of Stand Up Tall, cementing his status as the most exciting street talent in the UK.
The night continued to combine the forces of Dizzee with the Newham Generals, although this only brought out Dizzee’s extraordinary talent in contrast with the mediocre sound of his record label outfit. Dizzee then left for the Newham Generals to continue until the early hours, finishing off what Dizzee started, for a truly pumping club experience.