If you’re in the local scene to any meaningful degree, you know Swamburger
by name, face or reputation. He’s best known as one of the city’s most visible and accomplished artists in the worlds of both hip-hop
and visual art.
But he’s always been one of the more community-minded shakers
out there and has in recent years been working to move the scene more broadly as both impresario and label boss (Second Subject
). Well, that ability just got a powerful new boost
now that he’s partnered with top indie club the Social.
Between that club’s prestige and Swamburger’s cred and hustle, this could be a very high-value alliance.
His recent Swamburger Presents
showcase (Feb. 2, The Social) was headlined by intriguing Connecticut alt-rapper Ceschi Ramos.
Now how many MCs do you know who get down on an acoustic guitar?
Oh shit, that’s right, Everlast.
But still, it’s not common, and this guy sounds nothing
like Everlast. Behind the emotional singer-songwriter guise is a rap dynamo
who can torch it with a gunning cadence when he gets down to the hip-hop. It’s an interesting duality that clicks more in practice than it does on paper, due largely to his legit chops.
In tow was Ceschi’s tourmates Crunk Witch
from Maine. The only non-rap act of the night, the husband-wife duo is a spirited but cheesy
collision of lo-fi electronic dance music and glam-pop vocals with more histrionics than skill. But they did bring their own lights and fog machine,
so there’s that.
Of the other hip-hop acts of the night, Bleubird
brought the most veteran clout. A very respected underground MC
in these parts, he’s a complex and original composite of identity and style. Perhaps the only defining constants in his literate, impassioned and amazingly versatile raps are humor and intelligence. But maximum respect
this time to the guy for dropping a lyric for Jeff Kaplan,
a formerly local sound engineer we just lost in a tragic car accident.
Orlando rapper SKIP,
who’s spent the past couple years or so on a visual art sabbatical,
has very recently begun stepping back onto the stage. This time, he emerged with DJ Chrono
on the decks. No matter what he says, his heart still bleeds.
Although that desperation can sometimes yield mixed results, his passion is never in doubt. Now he’s back with renewed fire.
Speaking of fire, young rapper Acey Wasuto
– packing major-league heat for the first time with Solillaquist
mastermind and pacesetting MPC whiz Divinci
to back him up – shot out the gate spitting flames with a tough, unleashed swag that rocked like an Onyx
video next to these other indie cats. He’s a raw talent that still needs some chiseling, but the kid’s loaded with presence and electricity.
Swamburger’s always got big ideas.
But this new launch pad with the Social positions him in perhaps the best position yet to make things happen. So keep an eye out for anything attached to the words “Swamburger Presents.” It’ll be worth your while. Proof? The next one will feature alt-rap star Aesop Rock
This Little Underground is Orlando Weekly's music column providing perspective, live reviews and news on the city's music scene. Read the latest column here.
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