DJ Krush at the Biltmore (Live) [Review]
Vancouer, B.C. – DJ Krush is from Tokyo, Japan, and is known not only as a pioneer of Japanese hip-hop but as one of the most respected artists and producers in the hip-hop industry. On Friday, January 29, Krush rocked Vancouver’s Biltmore Cabaret using 2 turntables with Serato – which goes to show just how accepted Serato has become amongst DJs – as well as a mixer which he used to drop snare rolls and samples and to remix. The set brought it back to the 96-99 instrumental hip-hop sound: the crowd was really into it and he did a good job of ramping up the chill tracks into sections of drum and bass and breaks.
Anyone who came expecting to dance had to wait for the build-up, since in the beginning it was just head-nodding tracks. Krush is well known for his collaborations with DJ Shadow, and his set included many Shadow tracks including “Midnight In A Perfect World” and DJ Shadow’s remix of DJ Krush’s “Meiso”. One of the great moments of the night was Krush’s live remix of Shadow’s “Organ Donor,” in which he sampled the song and chopped it up on the fly creating a new track which was in the spirit of the original’s sample-chopped sound.
There were a few intense moments of turntable wizardry, sample drops and live remixing that got the crowd hype. In the encore DJ Krush deviated from gritty breakbeats and played tracks ranging from “Back in Black,” to “Billie Jean” to the classic reggae of Sister Nancy’s “Bam Bam” The encore was definitely a highlight because it showed a different side to what he’d presented in his main set and it was just enough to leave a good taste in your mouth, like dessert after a main course. The night ended with a sing-along to The Blend Crafters’ “Imagine,” a hip-hop instrumental version of the John Lennon classic.
It was nice to see a legend like DJ Krush perform his brand of hip-hop in a somewhat intimate setting like The Biltmore, and the crowd’s enthusiastic reaction was proof that instrumental sample-based hip-hop is alive and well.
Written by Kent Stephany for HipHopCanada
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