Real Live Action


w/ JayKin

Fortune Sound Club; March 9, 2011

Review By Chibwe Mweene

GZA, photo by Fathima Cader
GZA, photo by Fathima Cader

I Gotcha Back
There is something about the Wu-Tang Clan that awakens a higher level of enthusiasm in many show-goers. This was no exception at Fortune Sound Club, even though the GZA was the only Wu member to perform.

From the girls who were brought to the show by their boyfriends, to awkward looking graduate students, to your regular hip-hop fans who branded themselves part of the Wu army, these people were here to see GZA, aka the Genius, perform his classic cuts.

DJ Seko kicked off the night. His set was like visiting memory lane, as he played classic rap tracks from the 80s, the late 90s and even a handful of songs from the early 00s. He played hip-hop staples from Biggie Smalls, Dr. Dre and Snoop Dogg, but also pumped out more obscure joints from the likes of Onyx and Big L. It felt like I was at home just listening to some good music, but, you know, with 500 of my friends.

Vancouver’s own JayKin joined DJ Seko soon after. While I’d never heard of him prior to the show, it’s safe to say that it won’t be the last. He performed songs mainly form his Sneakers and Video Games mixtape, which demonstrated his values for the fundamentals of rap. Tight rhymes and solid beats coupled with videogame metaphors made for an entertaining set from the local. But perhaps his most outstanding quality was his breath control, a skill quite underrated by a lot of rappers during live performances. Vancouver certainly has some good hip-hop in its veins.

It was past midnight when the GZA finally took the stage. His arrival initiated a wild and stormy mosh pit. Nobody was left to be, as the constant pushing made it extremely difficult even to breath. The Genius opened with “Liquid Swords,” rapping with a cool and collected demeanor over the classic track. He has been perfecting his craft for well over a decade, which was made clear during his tight, though somewhat brief set. At one point he schooled the overly excited crowd in etiquette as he requested they stop speaking over him while preparing an a capella freestyle. Though he may have been sweating heavily, just like everyone else, he still kept a subtle grin on his face throughout the whole show. With a crowd that practically drooled at his every lyric, this came as no surprise.