DJ Itchy & Surface Empire.
Do you think you're a lucky person?
Luck had nothing to do with it.
This set, recorded in The Arches at Subcity's second Block Party in 2004, was not easy; it doesn't necessarily hold the fuzzy, saccharine sense of nostalgia that usually comes with an artist's knowing retrospection on the ubiquitous humble beginning. The group's first performance to a crowd of this size (1200 people) had to compete with technical problems, logistical problems and the small matter of playing a style of music that was effectively non-existent (apart from the rare novelty track, Glasgow hip-hop was an alien concept) to an audience that was, largely, unaware.
It's funny how the mind plays tricks on memory.
This session offers something else, something different. It captures the genre bending talent of DJ Itchy and his natural turntablist inclination, qualities that would later be identified as idiosyncratic of the anti-niche that the young Glaswegian has carved out for himself under his current moniker --Hudson Mohawke. Surface Empire MC Dom Sum displays the party-centric attitude of 'fucking with genre and sensibility' and bringing fun to hip-hop and hip-hop performance, that would result in his then-underground club night LuckyMe developing into a music and arts collective that would define quality in a newly acquired global scene.
Lyrics from Surface Empire's "The Making" // Photo by Arch Stanton
Posted at 15:52, 31st December 2009