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29 February

Photos by Julian Neil

Liquid Kandy was a great showcase of Australian hip-hop and Grime, literally jam packed with great Australian artists, big and small, giving some of the Perth locals a chance to showcase their talent in front of real Australian hip-hop fans.

Boasting over 15 acts the lineup and hype around this event was massive. I’ll try to keep this review short and take you through a little highlight reel of each act. 

You could feel the energy walking into Metro’s as Perth young guns Elliot Ness x Zeffer were delivering their onslaught of bars packed with metaphors. They both have a really great stage presence and kicked the night off to a flying start, setting the overall vibe for the rest of the evening. I had a little chat with them after their set and my two favourite tracks they performed are still unreleased so make sure you follow them as they have some absolute fire dropping this year.

Kodi Cunningham with New Wave Beat$ on the decks was next up and I have to say he was a standout act for me personally. To say he’s a natural word smith is an understatement. This guy looked so comfortable and at ease on stage, he instantly won over the entire crowd of the slowly filling Metro’s with his charisma and banter. He put everyone in a good mood and ramped up the energy in the building to a whole new level with some great light hearted crowd participation. Not to mention the tracks he played are fire. He’s one of the only 6k rappers I know who dropped a full album last year with every track being a heater. A couple stand out tracks from his set were – Tablets “Young boy trippy like acid, came a long way from the tablets, they’re like how did that psycho manage, they show me respect coz I come with the talent” which pretty much sums him up in one hook. No doubt this dude’s fucking talented. The other was his set closer “Bad For Me” peep the new vid below.

Next up was STR x Dr Tasty. Now these two had an amazing set. Solution The Rapper (STR) had a real lyrical prowess and held his own spitting quick grime bars as well as the headliners of the night. And Oh My Lord Dr. Tasty has the sauce!! She blew the crowd away and has to be in any conversation considering best female rapper in WA. They complimented each other’s styles very well and had a lot of great tracks, “Super Soak” taking the cake as my favourite so I’m now following her in anticipation for that track. STR has a big project dropping this year so go and follow both of them.

Split Figure jumped up next with Ren Zuki on the decks. Split has a real cool style, nice cadence and dope bars. He’s been releasing some dime tracks for time and has been holding it down for the 6K. His track Brûlée is an absolute heater.

Jaycee is one dude who’s doing it all a little different. I think every track he performed on the night was produced mixed and mastered by himself and he sure has a thing for rapping. He won me over when he said “If I have one message I want you to take from my set it’s to follow your dreams and don’t let anyone tell you different. My dream is to put this city in the map. I know it’s a big dream but that’s my dream. Thank you if you believe in me.” He had a very professional set and a dope backdrop with the lyrics to his latest track ‘I Got A Thing’ which was a real unique move I didn’t see again all night. He also dropped 26 music videos in 26 weeks last year which I haven’t seen anyone else in the world do so no one can knock his hustle. Check his latest track below:

Next up was the one and only MACSHANE. This guy is in a league of his own. He can spit like any of the best in Australia but the real highlight of his set was when he said “I’m sick of everyone spitting frees but the frees actually being writtens.” He proceeded to walk through the crowd who we’re holding up items they had in their pockets and freestyled so quick and clean it blew me away and was my personal highlight of the whole night. He is a true professional and brought a massive energy to his set screaming “Come on metros I’m pouring my life out to you right now make some fucking noise”. All of his track we’re fire but my favourite was the last track from his set “I Said.

It was really cool to see another lady on stage killing it. Penny Purr was up next with Back Kadet spinning on the decks she had a great stage presence and a few really nice tracks including “Bad Witch” and “Beast”.

As soon as Alex Jones hit the stage the whole night kicked into overdrive. Alex Jones (Melbourne based) has been dropping tracks since 2011 and has amassed over millions of views on his videos. It was instantly obvious that this was one of the guys everyone came to see. As soon as he walked out the entire mosh pit filled up in seconds. His set was amazing from start to finish. His bars we’re word class he honestly made it look too easy. Bkame a local Perth rapper jumped up and spat some verses with him as well as hyping his set which was really cool to see. The stand out track from his set was easily “No Comment” check it below

Bitter Belief was up next, and you could tell that this was a real special show for him. I consider him the Godfather of the Perth rap scene. He’s like Perth’s Eminem but works as a support worker too, truly passing the art of hip-hop to the next generation of Perth rappers. He had his cousin Luke on drums which added a real nice live feel which was lacking the rest of evening. He played some absolute hits with a great energy in his entire set. The highlight for me was a track he dedicated to his deceased friend Distah getting the crowd to make as much noise as they could for him before rapping over The XX ‘s “Intro” beat. Which with the live drums and sentiment behind the song made it an extremely special moment.

Next up was Wombat. I have no idea how he does what he does. He was clearly heavily intoxicated but in no way did it slightly detract from his set. If anything, it added to his aesthetic and he still easily rapped quicker, louder and clearer than everyone on the lineup. I don’t want gas him too much but he’s easily one of the best rappers Aus easy. I swear he must rap in his sleep. It’s as natural as talking to him. He had Greely, as well as Perth locals Cortext and Bkame up with him for a few tracks which added to the already massive energy of his set. The easy highlight was when he walked through the crowd rapping “Zombie”

Following Wombat was Perth local Complete currently on his “Death Rattle Tour”. If you haven’t yet heard of Complete it’s about time you wake up. He’s been making moves for the past decade already having dropped two full length albums and recently adding his third album “Death Rattle” to his discography. Complete is on another level with his intricate wordplay and hard-hitting bars. The guys a lyrical genius and has to be in the conversation for Perth’s best male rapper. With Uncool Sam on the decks and Psych Ward (Omac, Defekt, Sever, Mysc and Kogz) joining him for some of the tracks Complete’s set was one of the best of the night. There we’re a few real standout tracks including “Loony Bin” ft Psych Ward and his massive track “Jordan” where we sat on a chair exactly like in the music video. But the stand out moment not to mention a massive moment for hip-hop in Perth city was when he performed “Blood Stained Nike’s” with pretty much every rapper from the lineup on stage with him.

Up next was Shadow. Perth’s rising star who’s been making big moves making himself known supporting big names like Hilltop Hoods and Brockhampton not to mention jumping on stage with Triple One at Hidden Festival last week. With Bace Kadet on the decks he killed it as per usual playing some great songs like “Shut up and Vibe”, “School High” and “My City”. The highlight for me was easily when he played “It Don’t End” and got everyone who was vibing back stage on stage with him.

After Shadow finished the whole club pretty much cleared out apart from like 30 stragglers. Which was really sad to see considering the final three acts Gamirez, T$oko and Greesy are all class Perth acts.

Gamirez is considered a king amongst men in the 6k scene and was a pivotal player in bringing together the new wave hip-hop scene here in Perth. In my opinion he’s Perth’s Manu Crooks. He recently moved to Brisbane to push his music over there and flew back specifically for this event. It was amazing to see “Grinding” and his track with Figuero Jones “Guaruntee” live once again.

T$oko is a veteran in the Perth hip-hop scene and has to be in the convo for Perth’s best rapper. The guys been killing it the last few years dropping hit after hit after hit. It was sad and pretty fucked up to see him performing to 10 people after Complete was rapping to at least 400 only an hour and half before. 

Greesy is one of Perth best up and comers. He’s 19 but raps like a veteran. He just released his heavily awaited debut EP “Shockwave” and it’s dope. He should have played before Alex Jones and not got stuck with the graveyard shift.

All in all Liquid Kandy was an awesome showcase of some of Australia’s leading Hip-Hop and Grime MC’s. Keep your eyes peeled for Liquid Kandy Vol 2. If the first edition is anything to go by it was a great night with some really big moments for Hip-hop Perth city.

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