Method Man & Redman – A lesson in old-school hip hop

It’s been 16 years since Method Man & Redman released their debut platinum selling album “Blackout!” and in all that time they hadn’t once brought their show to Luxembourg, well all that changed last night as Rockhal was given a lesson in old-school hip hop.

The two east coast rappers had success of their own before teaming up as a duo. Method is best known for his role in Wu-Tang Clan and Red had already carved out a successful career of his own through Def Jam Recordings. The duo also went on to star in their cult classic stoner film ”How High” in 2001 before doing just one more album together ”Blackout! 2” in 2009.

As I arrived at Rockhal it was clear it would be no ordinary evening. The club was packed full of people watching a skate contest organised by Olliewood skate shop and the lobby had scratch workshops and an interactive video installation. It made for a much more entertaining wander about before the show started.

When the music did begin it was up to the soulful hip hop sounds of Charles X to warm up the crowd. If Michael Jackson was a child of the 90s this is how he would have sounded. He even threw in a few Jackson spins and crotch grabs for good measure. All this whilst confessing ”I’m as high as a” (you can add your own expletives). I suppose that kind of explained the grin from cheek to cheek and the laughing. He also went on to say how he was a long way from home and he misses his mum, got to admit I was not expecting that stage chat last night.

As the anticipation grew so did the smoke and it wasn’t just coming from the stage. The security had their work cut out as the crowd resembled an industrial landscape at times with smoke rising all over, as everyone got ready to greet the hip hop legends.

Then it was time, what some folk had waited years to see, Method Man & Redman together in Luxembourg.

The duo were like a comedy double act, bouncing off each other lyrically and physically, conducting the crowd to cheer and roar throughout. It was also apparent this wasn’t going to just be the two albums they’ve done together but a delve into both their back catalogues from “Pick It Up”, “How High” to “All I Need” as well as some Wu-Tang Clan and the Ol’ Dirty Bastard classic “Shimmy Shimmy Ya”.

Seeing as much of the crowd had Wu Tang t shirts on, this was less about just Method Man & Redman but about a celebration of everything old-school hip hop, from the two scratch DJs to the minimal stage set up, there was none of the glitz and glamour of modern day hip hop stars.

They went on to call for respect for all the true hip hop artist that come to Luxembourg and to support the true form of the music, not the crap played on the radio, which of course got a loud cheer.

You can’t fake the energy and excitement that exuded from them all night, it truly felt like two old friends just enjoying themselves from start to finish. And now with “How High 2” & “Blackout! 3” rumoured to be on the way, it’s good to see these two will be putting on more shows like this for years to come. Let’s just hope it doesn’t take so long for them to return.

29/01/16 – Rockhal

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