KRS-One, Beyond Average: 24 Kitchen Street, Liverpool



A hip hop legend came to Liverpool once more last night, Getintothis’ Lewis Ridley headed for the sound of da police.

We’ve explored the exciting Liverpool hip hop scene in these pages before, and it will come as no surprise to some that a legend such as KRS-One decided to return to Liverpool again.

In support were a hip hop outfit that are central to the regions flavour. Beyond Average are the duo made up of MCs Big O and Jeopardy, who earned national airplay on 1Xtra a few years back.

Signed to Modern Sky, they supported The Tea Street Band with TRACKY at the back end of last year, but this was far more their crowd.

Where Beyond Average are concerned, grime meets dubstep beats as lyrics and melody fuse. There is an anticipation in 24 Kitchen Street, but one that instead of, as is often the case, detracts from support, this enhances the slot.

Popular recent release The Re Up and No Comment from the apparent new album dropping later in the year come too as a duo, with a little help from Jonno. With the latter, it only takes two verses for those down in the bottom of Kitchen Street to rhyme their lyrics back.

It’s a high energy, compact set, and it’s left to DJ 2KIND to spin at the venue waits for the main event.

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When it enters, it’s a false start, but KRS retreats and re-enters as 24 Kitchen Street explodes.

“Real hip-hop is over here!” He bellowed to a packed crowd time and again, tearing through an extensive catalogue with awesome ease. When it drops, Sound of Da Police, Kitchen Street and it’s reddish glow goes berserk. There’s people on shoulders, flailing arms and undisputed pandemonium.

“We got a racist in office at the moment calling himself a President. So all of us have gotta rise up against it.” He drops into a reggae anthem dedicated to the original population of the US.

There was always going to be politics, and rightly so, but it is somewhat surreal feeling the power of such an issue in a brick building on Merseyside.

Such is the power of this man, gawped at as a God on stage, an icon of his genre and capable of producing nights like this one still. One can only admire and enjoy.

Images by Getintothis’ Mark Holt