This year’s Rolling Stone Live Lodge’s three-week run has been featuring some of our fave artists like Woodes, Stonefield, REMI, as well as a sold-out show from one of Australia’s most exciting acts of the moment: A.B. Original.
A.B. Original is made up of Briggs and Trials, long-standing members of Australian hip hop royalty. And so this was sold out for good reason. They stormed the tiny room at The Workers Club. Briggs and Trials’ larger-than-life personalities commanded the attention of each and every person. They sure know how to work that stage presence and get the crowd on-side – not that they really needed to. Everyone there was already in the palm of their hands.
Though they may be reluctant to accept that their music is “protest music”, the set did take on a political rally feel at times. They even had an comedic introductory piece featuring one of their mates dressed up as a Reclaim Australia protester. These guys obviously have a sense of humour. Briggs’ “too many weights, not enough spin” comment halfway through the night after some fire rapping was gold.
A New York DJ named Total Eclipse hailing from a crew called The X-Ecutioners served as a hypeman and backing DJ. I don’t think I can physically count the number of times I’ve been made to listen to Fatman Scoop, there are only so many times one can dance to ‘Be Faithful’. But Total Eclipse made it somewhat refreshing with his turntable action. Dope beats were indeed spun.
A.B. Original’s collaboration with Indigenous Australian musician Gurrummul ‘The Hunt’ was a striking moment of the night. On a different note, did you know about the awkwardly swept-under-the-rug racist verse in ‘Tie Me Kangaroo Down, Sport’? Now you do. A.B. Original should be commended for bringing Indigenous issues to the forefront of the younger demographic.
A surprise appearance from the dreamboat that is Dan Sultan was made to perform their track ‘January 26’. You might know him as a sweet alt-rock singer, but on this night, he was on the same rowdy level as Briggs and Trials. And with a song as powerful a message as ‘January 26’ has, he needed to be: “Australia Day is one symptom of the bigger issues of the racism in Australia. You can address Australia Day, you can address people doing Blackface – but things aren’t going to change until people are willing to have the conversation about the bigger issue of racism.”
Based in: Briggs – Shepparton, Australia; Trials – Adelaide, Australia.
Upcoming album: Reclaim Australia, to be released later in the year on Golden Era Records and Bad Apples Music.
Sounds like: M-Phazes, Dialectrix, TZU.
Say what? We love a good crossover Twitter beef, this time between Briggs and basketballer Andrew Bogut.