Chip is no doubt a LEGEND of the scene and one of the very few rappers, form the UK, that have managed to maintain relevance for 10+ years; a feat that should be respected. The MC burst onto the scene as a 16-year-old prodigy after appearing on Westwood TV alongside fellow young upcomer, Ice Kid, and veteran grime MC Wiley. Since this point. Chip has seen ups and downs, as well as constant transformations in style, but the North -London rapper has definitely found himself as a artist and has firmly placed himself in the top tier of UK rappers.
Before I discuss Chip’s performance, I have to shout out the opening acts who all brought their own unique energy to the stage. The show opened with Fred Fredas, whose conscious lyrics and hard-hitting instrumentals grabbed many members of the crowd. This was followed by DeeWain, a fellow member of The Part-Timers, and with no bias, I can safely say, he shut that shit down. DeeWain’s blend of lyrical content, eclectic beat selection and MJ-esque dance moves caught the eye of the majority of the audience. The energy on stage was phenomenal and this is just a small glimpse of what should be expected this year from the upcoming rapper. Lastly Ms. Banks completed the last lap and her undeniable flow had the audience on their feet. Her performance of latest record ‘Come Thru’ was a particular highlight and it was clear to see that we were watching a future star in the making.
Artist: Deewain (Taken by Arron Watson-McNab)
Chip’s headline show acted as a culmination of his 10 years of activity within the scene; providing the audience with a journey though his career so far. This allowed audience members to not only see his development as an artist, but also provided nostalgia as he performed classics such as ‘Who are you’, ‘Chip Diddy Chip’ and ‘Champion’. However, for me personally, the highlight of this set of classic tracks was Chip placing himself back in the shoes of his 16-year-old self and performing the Westwood freestyle that broke him onto the scene. What made this even more potent and reminiscent of that legendary set was an introduction form the big dawg himself, Westwood, discussing how far Chip has come since that day.
As with many of the recent UK headline shows, Chip brought out a plethora of special guests to match his own energy on a stage, this included Stylo G, Lotto Boyz, Not3s, Kojo Funds and Ghetts; but special shout out needs to go to Giggs who received an ear-drum shattering reception when coming out to perform ‘Amazing Minds’ with Chip. Hollowman also decided to bless the crowd with a performance of the club banger ‘Whippin’ Excursion’; sending the audience into a frenzy. Giggs is simply a national treasure and should be knighted for both ‘Talkin’ the Hardest’ and ‘Whipping Excursion’. Just saying.
Artist: Giggs (Taken by Arron Watson-McNab)
Anyway, what made this show even more impressive was the use of a live band, which just gave each one of Chip’s track that something special. The use of the live drum on tracks like ‘Settings’ and ‘Confirmed’ sounded perfect and you could see that Chip was in his element on stage. The show had me feeling like I was participating in a slice of grime/UK rap history; with Chip showing how, in many different points in his career, his music has created defining moments in the genre. What is even more scary is that Chip is still young and as hungry as ever; meaning I can only imagine what music he is going to create in the near future.
Take a look at photos below, shot by Arron Watson-McNab (FacesPlacesLaces)