“Turn that gangsta shit up Manchester and say ‘Fuck Police’,” barked Freddie Gibbs’ beats architect from behind his lowered decks at The Deaf Institute. It should have all become clear then really.

Hoary and aggressive, Indiana raised rapper Freddie Gibbs is another wordsmith who centralised his du jour styled expressions on a love of the female genatalia – often referred to as ‘pussy’ – himself and friends – ‘nigga’ – and intercourse – ‘fucking’. Bearing in mind these three idioms are phrased together in approximately – and I mean approximately – 93% of his tracks. Suprising then that for tunes entangled with sentiments disfavoured in our contemporary culture, his on stage antics were actually managable.

Backed by his ESGN [Evil Seeds Grow Natuarally reference] wearing brethend who swayed nonchalently to the pulsating grooves dictated behind him, Freddie entered the stage to a tirrade of macho lads chanting all manner of expletives towards him. I’ll be honest, I don’t think they campaigning against his vocabulary.

Gibbs’ is more than this however. Hostile is a better depiction. “We’re not against tap, but we’re against those thugs, can’t be legit when every nigga in your clique sold drugs,” from 2014’s ‘Thuggin’ was antagonisitic of his American contemporaries and broken with a flurry of 70’s manufactered grooves and ardently spoken expressive breakdowns. These worded sections were a stand point for each track, but something that severly demonstrated Freddie’s lyrically intelligent side.

‘Have U Seen Her’ – drug heavy references and tags like “summertime, can’t do jail, money in the safe make bail, got these pussy ass niggas might tell,” throughout – saw one spliff possessor throw his stash to Gibbs and become the envy of the auditorium before ‘One Eighty Seven’ followed later with yet more fragmented beats, instinctive pattern shifting and shirt wearing. Standard really.

Although falling slightly when mentioning Manchester United football club – research, research, research – and an understandable urge to play the condescending card, it has to be said Freddie Gibbs is a natural at shooting up a crowd already high on a mercurial love of the rap form. In short, the message may be warped, but the dosage was bang on.

 Words by Clive K Hammond


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