On February 11th 2017, we were in attendance to watch Dumbfoundead, and friends tear down Vinyl inside the Hard Rock casino in Las Vegas. It was his first official show in Sin City and it didn’t disappoint… Our arrival to the venue, was met with a line of eager fans, anticipating the craziness bound to ensue throughout of the course of the night. After what felt like ions of waiting, it was finally time. The event kicked off by DJ Zo, who did an excellent job of inciting crowd enthusiasm, while setting the tone for the the night early on.
“You now rocking with the YOX” …
After an incredibly live, eclectic set from DJ Zo, who got the crowd moving; playing everything from Migos, Earth Wind and Fire, to Vanessa Carlton, it was time for Year of the Ox to hit the stage. YOX is comprised of Virginia natives Lyricks and JL, who gained notoriety when the video for their song “Seven Rings” went viral on different social media outlets. The song and video showcases their super slick, quality dense flow; Not reliant on catchy dance moves, unintelligible dialogue or zoo animal noises. Just raw talent. The kind of music Hip Hop purists live for. Being Korean Americans, their music is often reflective of their upbringing; seamlessly bridging the two cultures, while shattering stereotypes. Proving skills trump outer appearance.
From the moment they step on stage, you realize you’re witnessing something special. Going in with “YOX (featuring DJ Zo)”, a track off their Self-titled EP. Energy overflowing as they work the entire stage from corner to corner, engaging the crowd the entire time, spitting such fire, they should come with warning labels. The dynamic duo, went on to perform other songs off their EP, such as ‘Check 2 Check’ which highlights the struggles of maintaining a mundane job to pay the bills, yet trying to make it. The song resonates well with the dreamers in the crowd, who can relate deeply to doing what it takes to pursue your dreams. Following up with “Stampede”, “Hajima”, “Stretch” and capping their set off ‘Seven Rings’. If you weren’t familiar with the YOX prior to this tour, consider yourself lucky this was your introduction. Support real talent. Join the Ox gang… If you purchased Dumb’s most recent album release ‘We Might Die’, then you understood this wouldn’t be the last time you see of them on stage…
Now, the man of the hour. Too sweet to be sour. It was time for K-town Royalty to take to the stage. He opened with “Harambe”. The second single off his “We Might Die” album. The momentum would only build from there, as he went on to deliver nearly an hour long set, laced with a vibrancy felt from the DJ booth; to the crowd, and wall to wall inside of Vinyl. Throughout the course of the night he’d perform other joints off of WMD such as “Hold me Down” “We Might Die”, “Cochino (featuring the legendary Too $hort)” and “Murals”. This song and video resulted in a dope mural of his likeness sprawled across Catalina Liquor on 8th street, in Los Angeles.
He also performed “Safe”. The video garnered a significant amount of notoriety, for the depiction of himself in famous acting roles containing predominantly Caucasian actors; Challenging Hollywood’s reluctance to portray Asians in leading roles in T.V. and film. He would also perform older material in “Mijangwon” “Korean Jesus” “Cellphone” and “Are We There Yet?” which was performed over an array of classic Hip-Hop beats. At the midway point, after some jabs at the 45th president of the United States, and fan interaction, he went in with “Ganghis Khan”, serving as the perfect lead-in to “Ancestors”. A collaborative track with members of the YOX.
After a quick intro, we were joined again by Lyricks and JL. Though Dumbfoundead was doing an effortless job of holding it down on stage, the combination of him, DJ Zo, and YOX, aided in bringing the volume of a show already at 10, to a 15. With the YOX in tow, they would perform “K.B.B. (featuring Lyricks)”, and “Banned in the Motherland”. Both songs feature a plethora of notable Korean talent; Jay Park, Jessi, G2, as well as others. Though they were not in attendance, it was a real treat to hear JL spit with a finesse and dope-ness all his own, alongside these tracks. Lyricks too added some fire to “Banned”.
Fans got to hear the first verse of ‘It G Ma’; a song made famous by The Cohorts with Keith Ape at the helm. Dumb went on to perform his verse from the remix, showcasing a series of popular American rappers; highlighting the insane amount of popularity the song garnered, the past year and a half. There was also a brief nod, to viral sensation, and the immensely talented, Rich Chigga bumping “Dat $tick”. The show would end the same way it opened with “Harambe”. Though a track repeat, it was met with what seemed more enthusiasm, than when initially performed. Despite having left everything on stage, the guys were gracious enough to meet and take photos with everyone with attendance; All the while being very kind, personable individuals. The concert may have been many days ago; With the images projecting from the archives of my alcohol tinted, hazy memories, it’ll remain an experience I’ll never forget.
By Shantanee – KondaKorea Staff
Photos by Keyzeejahnezze