If someone told A Star back in 2007 that he’d be rolling out on a hoverboard in front of a packed O2 Academy crowd, he probably wouldn’t have believed it. You could probably work that out from his face when he entered the stage at his first headline show last night. This wasn’t a destination by any stretch of the imagination, but it was a hugely important milestone.
So that huge grin on A Star’s face when he first heard the crowd is understandable. We’re told he had to go straight to a local hospital to get that smile surgically removed.
But Revolutionary Live wasn’t just about A Star’s personal journey, it was also about that of the UK grime and hip hop scene. He pulled out some unexpected gems and forgotten classics.
The evening started off though with a nod to the future. JoJoey kicked things off, followed by Melvillous and Hope Dealers. All had new music to share, including something exciting from the forthcoming Melvillous EP. Love Thy Bro – look out for it.
A Star of course rattled through the hits from his Revolutionary EP. Starting with a track like Take Over, you know he wanted fireworks from the get go. The crowd responded in kind. Ladies were warned to take off their heels. Yes, it was that kind of show!
We had a smattering of guests throughout the night. Becca Folkes and Guvna B were among those who showed their faces early doors. The live version of TwoZeroOneSix was amazing, by the way.
But it was when A Star went old school that things started to get really interesting. He brought on his old school mans to perform the back-in-the-day grime tracks. The grime cypher they did at the end was ridiculous. They had – wait, is that Sammy G?? It’d be tedious to name everyone but it was a cast of plenty that included E Tizz, Triple O, Dwayne Tryumf, Icie and a LOT more.
This is what grime is all about. Just put on beats, give mics to the MCs and get them to spit fire until the cows come home. The atmosphere was riotous.
All said, this was one of the best shows we’ve ever been to. Not just that, it was significant for what it meant for Christian grime and hip hop. It showed the scene has clout, it has a heritage and it can no longer be seen as a sideshow.
People are talking about a resurgence in grime. Many of the lyricists on the stage last night would argue that it never went away.