Best Of Show highlights acts that exceed expectation in the live music setting. Photos by Micah Schmidt from the band's Brooklyn Bowl show earlier this month.
As a sporadic attendee of the infamous Sin Sin East Village rap battles, I've come to really enjoy a bit of unknowns spewing wordplay with my usual diet of mixed lo-fi, buzz bands, and larger-than-life "indie-rock" personalities. But tapping in to the low rumble of New York's hip-hop scene (when you blog about The National and are really into some nonsense called "chillwave" at some DIY venue in Brooklyn) is like trying to blind purchase cakes made in the back-room of a bodega (read: often pretty terrible and generic, who does that?). So usually I stick to my usual diet of trusted store brand (Big Boi and Kanye). On Friday night, I buried my inhibitions and hit up Santos Party House to see a hip-hop/funk band I'd been hearing about, and they pretty much baked the sweetest cake I've ever seen (tasted?).
Screw the food analogy, this show was war, and the enemy was a bored and lifeless crowd. Guess who won? The Lifted Crew
blew up Santos Party House with a grenade launcher of funk and soul. The nine piece band (including backup singers and a horn section) really filled the room with rhythm. Several other acts peppered the evening (including popular songwriter Just Blaze and even Kid Cudi) but it seemed like Lifted was the only crew to hype up the crowd to the rafters (without hype men, mind you). The Lifted Crew bring it back to the days where a band had to prove its worth in front of a crowd before it got anywhere.
They've got some recordings floating around, but predictably, a band of their electric nature needs to be experienced in the flesh before it can be truly appreciated. Chemistry on the stage plays a big part in the Lifted live set, and their music has a strong emphasis on kinetic energy. All in all, it felt like a reminder for the New York music scene; we all might love staring at our shoes, but a truly great show should have those feet moving. That is where The Lifted Crew comes in. -joe puglisi
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Lifted Crew on Myspace
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