When I walked into Medusa last night for Alphabethead’s Wonderful World of the Weird tour to find Hamilton’s DJ Indecline mixing and scratching hip hop and punk records, I knew the night was going to be an interesting one.
The colourful circus-like backdrop behind him, and flags hanging around the walls, only added to the atmosphere.
Around 11pm Wellington’s the Shocking and Stunning took to the stage. These guys might like they should be playing hippie folk music but what they churn out is a sort of electronic space funk; all synthesizers, huge drum beats and weird noises. Last time I saw them play they were performing as a two piece but last night they were joined by a bassist and vocalist/odd noise maker, which added another dimension to their sound.
They always manage to get the crowd dancing, and last night was no exception. It’s no surprise; their music just makes you want to move, particularly when the drums get stuck into some funky rhythms.
Shortly after midnight, ringmaster Alphabethead asked for quiet from the crowd and announced to the waiting masses that he was to help us answer three questions: who are we? What are we here for? And, what lies in store for us?
Without further delay he stepped behind his turntables and proceeded to blow our minds with his blend of hip hop, funk and jungle, proving once again that he is without peer in turntablism within New Zealand.
After announcing, through the use of cleverly placed signs within album covers, that he was not alone, he rang a small bell and summoned Auckland MC Tourettes to the stage. After walking out through the colourful backdrop dressed in a bunny costume Tourettes delivered a couple of tracks in his humourous, rapid fire style, covering his usual topics of poverty and general “down and outness”.
He then brought out Christchurch’s Jay Roacher, enquiring about his wellbeing before launching into Jay’s latest single Cheer Up Jay. The two MCs worked well on stage together, interacting throughout their performance, while Alphabethead didn’t stop moving the entire time, racing out from behind his turntables to jump around behind the MCs, getting back just in time to get the next song going.
It was a fantastic night, full of surprises and outstanding performances from everyone. The crowd lapped up every minute of it and didn’t seem to want it to ever end.