Lecrae: Live @ Scala, London
Lecrae Devaughn Moore better known as Lecrae is 38 years old and from Houston, Texas and well known for his songwriting, producing and rapping skills. He's even acted and been in a few documentaries! This talented geezer has won two Grammy Awards and seven Dove Awards - including the first hip hop artist to win a Grammy Award for Best Gospel Album. He has released seven studio albums and three mix tapes as a solo artist and released three studio albums, a remix album, and one EP as the leader of the hip hop group 116 Clique - as well as racking up spots in various billboard music charts for both. The guy's been busy and mad productive! Career goals or what?
His latest album release 'All Things Work Together' features the likes of Tori Kelly, 1K Phew and Ty Dolla $ign.“This album serves as a journey through chaos and hope, brokenness and blessing,” says Lecrae..... he aint talkin' bout Brexit but that statement is bang on...
Right – so there's some back story info for ya. Of course, you probably knew all that shit already, right?! Now, back to the whole reason I'm sat here at 4am, 17 cigs down and a few empty cans of regret surrounding me - Lecrae's performance in London. What can I say....I arrived at the venue, Scala near Kings Cross, to a queue of several hundred people, spanning various age ranges, religions and cultures. It seems Lecrae's music speaks to everyone, even your Bingo lovin' Nan!
After a brief security search I was finally inside. Greeting us on the decks was DJ Promote....spinning classic hip hop tunes from the ever faithful Wu Tang Clan, Busta Ryhmes and Kendrick Lamar, before adding some Jazz fusion into the joint. In the low end of the mix I can hear the distinctive frequency of the sub bass beginning to roll.... then...Bosh! DJ Promote cuts in to some bass driven, floor splittin' Dubstep - Everyone loses their shit.
After chain smoking 4 cigs in a fluorescent funnel of a corridor and chatting with some of his hardcore fans, the roar of the crowd has me running back inside the main room. He's on - And boy it goes off!
The familiar 'Watchu Mean' ft Aha Gazelle has the crowd bouncing and rapping every word straight back at his sweaty face. 'Can't Stop Me Now' serves as a breather for the clash of prominent noise between Converse trainers and a hard floor - Only to give way under the harmonised chorus from the crowd. The crowd are mad hyped and I'm feeling wavy with them.
The energy inside the room is pure vibes, mirrored by the energy of Lecrae, who only stops between songs to remind us to love ourselves and tell anecdotes about life and situations we find ourselves in - Before finally breaking into the funky riff of 'Come and Get Me.'
Hold up, Hold up, Hold up.......Something's happening.... A change of BPM escalates through the venue, causing a roar and a ruckus from the fans - Followed imminently by an impending dark and grimey bassline. This track is the140bpm 'Dirty Water' and it hits the bass G-spot....and yeah, I lost my shit too.
After finding my shit and realising it was quite late on a school night, I leave Scala and head back to reality, stopping off for a 30p piss at the train station and an over priced pasty. Lecrae's thoughtful lyricism, personal and worldly truths, angled against well crafted and varied beats, proves he is one of the best in the game and rightly so....9 awards bruv......and counting.....
Not gonna lie. I am now a faithful disciple and convert of Lecrae's Gospel Hip-Hop sound. Don't get me wrong - I liked his shit before, just hadn't seen it first hand and LIVE! This is no last supper....this is the AWAKENING!
Eldraw & Jay Wardle