A good hip hop gig usually requires some hard work, but few artists can equal the effort put in by Verb T to make a good show, a great one. Hosting and judging the open mic competition, undertaking hype man duties for Moreone and performing for over an hour can’t be easy work but he makes it look like it. Walking off stage to greet fans and sell cd’s was just icing on the cake that proves that the independent, hardworking spirit is alive and well in Verb T.
The lengthy open mic gave local rappers a chance to win two free beats, to use however they please. A highly coveted prize judging by the amount of entrees alone. It gave an eclectic look at some of the talent that Dublin has to offer and gave some lesser known artists the chance to show the audience their skill set.
Sligo based act, This Side Up, deliver an energetic set. It’s clear that their show has been honed and sharpened since the last time I saw them perform, supporting Oddisee last year in the Sugar Club. Moreone, a U.K. rapper signed to Verb T’s label In The Balance Records, performs with conviction and hunger during his opening set. He appreciates the love shown by the crowd and it’s reciprocated.
Verb T’s set list dips into almost every facet of his large discography. After years of performing, it’s hardly surprising that he is incredibly concise on the mic. As one quarter of the High Focus supergroup, The Four Owls, it’s only right that he drops tracks like Silent Flight and Assassination, if only for a verse. For anyone unfamiliar with him before tonight, he does more than enough to leave an impression on each member of the audience.
It’s well after 3a.m by the time things wrap up and everyone manages to stumble out of the Grand Social. If there’s one thing to take away from this night, it’s that we should support the artists that put in the effort by buying concert tickets, that were only €5, and buying music and merchandise. It’s the least we can do for the people bringing excellent hip hop shows like this to Ireland. The more we support, the more we will get it return.