Sup pups, had a nice weekend? Basked in the glorious weather and took off all your clothes because for at least 45 minutes the sun peaked its big yellow face out from behind the clouds? Well, I guess if you’re not currently jamming on the little rock that is the UK you won’t quite understand the urgency with which the British people are ready to get naked if we see the slightest sign of sun. If it’s not raining it’s BBQ time! Hey I’m not knocking it, I wore only the shortest shorts all weekend.
Anyway. Now I’ve set the scene, imagine all of this was going on whilst myself and our resident beat boxer Matt went down to The Elements Festival in South London. Organised by the Breakin’ KCL crew and most notably Ms Kate Mulligan (if I get any of this wrong feel free to tell me). Due to Mr Ryder coming over from Bristol to see me, and us having a hot date with the science museum (it was fucking ace incase you were wondering) at the beginning of the day we only caught the last act of the day which was The Mouse Outfit, featuring Dr Syntax, Sparkz and a cheeky guest feature of Truthos Mufasa. However considering we only got there for the last 90 minutes or so I can still safely say we had a brilliant time.
I know we bang on about this all the time, but I love the underground hip-hop scene (in all fairness we are a underground hip-hop site, I’m sure none of this is a surprise to any of you). Yes there are a lot of faults within it just like any scene, but I’d like to think that the ratio of dickhead to genuinely nice person is pretty good. I’ll be very happy when the phrase ‘no homo’ is no longer acceptable, and misogyny isn’t still seen as the norm; but on the whole I’d much rather be a gay kid at The Elements Festival then at a Rick Ross show that’s for sure. There are improvements being made, and progression is happening.
The organisers and so too the attendees did a great job of creating a welcoming and inclusive atmosphere, and reminded me why I love the hip-hop scene so much. Everyone there had a giant smile on their face, and Matt and I left with our jaws hurting after spending the whole time grinning like little kids. The Mouse Outfit were a great band and did a fantastic job of mixing classic funk with new school hip-hop to create something that had us doing our best foot-shoulder-skanky-hand-dance thing. Dr Syntax, Sparkz and Truthos were all on top form and I was really impressed with Truthos who I hadn’t heard before. He spat some brilliant double time. The band itself were great musicians (There was a trumpet player! How fucking rad is that? VERY fucking rad) and played as tight live as any recorded track that I’ve heard; they also did a top job (top job? Yeah why not, rhyming is cool) of getting the crowd hyped.
Although that being said they didn’t really need much encouragement; and the impromptu ‘Macarena-style’ dance was both funny and awesome all in one go. Basically, in my humble opinion if you ever hold a party or need something to cheer you up then I suggest you invite your local breakin’ crew to sort you out. Being a graff kid I’d like to think we’re the coolest element of hip-hop (hold tight those of you getting your feathers ruffled this is all light hearted jest) but I think most people will agree that bboys and bgirls can manage to get away with wearing and doing anything just because well, well they’re bboys/bgirls, and the whole day was testament to the skills and talents of these kids.
Talking of graff, it did get a nice feature and it made me happy to see that it had a little shine too. Boxes of paint were on hand for anyone to have a cheeky go and do a few throw ups or maybe just write ‘FE U R SO FIT I AM NOT EVEN JKN DOE. Whatever took your fancy. It would have been nice if the walls had been a bit closer to the main part of the festival so more people had given it more attention, but I have a feeling that wasn’t necessarily the ‘fault’ of the organisers and more so Kings College where the event was being held. Also not forgetting Matthew and I did arrive late, so perhaps it did get a little more love whilst we were busy being impressed with science and dressing up as WW1 fighter pilots (That was so great. SO. GREAT.) Either way the fact that the Elements crew gave it a section made me pleased enough and did a good job of encompassing all aspects of hip-hop which I personally greatly appreciated.
Edit:Earlier on in the day before we arrived they did have more empathises on the different elements. “DJ sections at the other end of the venue where there were DJ cyphers, 7 to smoke dance battle, and a jam session and DJ tutorials. So graffiti was smack in the middle of the event with graffiti tutorials for those who are less knowledgeable about the art form. And there are open mic in the bar too. Tried to make sure all elements were equally covered.” Thanks to Kate for updating us!
This was the first of hopefully many Elements Festivals to come, and I can only encourage more people to get down to and support any event the KCL crew put on, or are involved with in the future because they really know how to hold a party. This really made our weekend, and I haven’t had as good a time at a hip-hop show in ages. Well done to everyone that helped organise such a fun festival!
Side note: If you were ever wondering if drinking enough coffee to keep a horse awake all to yourself was a good idea, the answer is no-well sort of.
(If any of the breakers want their names on the pictures or taken down just hit us up)