Krept & Konan Gig Review - Brighton - 21/11/14

26 November 2014

Tags: Pear Shaped

Krept & Konan Gig Review - Brighton - 21/11/14

Written by Charlie Lowe

Krept & Konan are a UK rap duo from South London, consisting of Casyo 'Krept' Johnson and Karl 'Konan' Wilson. They met and became friends in 2005 and in 2009 formed the now well-known duo together. Releasing their first mixtape in 2010 under the name 'Redrum' and a second Mixtape shortly after named 'Tsunami' they sparked immediate interest in the UK Grime scene. In 2011 the duo's cover of 'Otis' by Jay-Z and Kanye West became a massive You Tube hit, apparently garnering over 5 million views before it was taken down at the request of Jay-Z's legal team. Regardless of the controversy around the track it’s impossible to deny the part it played in the pairs spike in popularity. In 2013 they won the MOBO for Best UK Newcomer and after the huge success of their third mixtape 'Young Kingz' they signed a record deal with Virgin MEI. This year they've continued their impressive run of success with another MOBO, this time for Best Hip Hop act.  

It goes without saying, the future is sure looking bright for this South London duo.

Krept and Konan weren’t supposed to hit the stage until 1:30 am, so we had a fairly late night ahead of us. Shooshh was an interesting venue. A night club situated under the famous Victorian arches on Brighton beach, it had become quite well known for its glamorous decor and VIP experience. We were interested to see what all the fuss was about.

It was a Runway Friday night, which meant the club was plenty busy and drinks were cheap. Very cheap. The main room was packed, a large bar ran along the wall on the right side of the room and a curved stage with a DJ in the middle sat in the opposite corner, there were multiple archways and doors leading to other rooms with differing music and vibes throughout and a winding stairway led to a second floor above where you could look down on the festivities below. We grabbed ourselves a round of Rum and Cokes from the friendly and very speedy bar staff and then set about trying to position ourselves nearer the stage to get a good spot for pictures. 1:30 am came and went with continual reminders that Krept & Konan would be on stage 'very soon'. We knew it wouldn’t really be anytime soon so we grabbed ourselves another round of those cheap drinks.

The reminders continued through 1:45 and 2 am, still with no show, until the lads finally came on stage at around 2:15. The announcer did well to build some hype before their entrance and they came on loud and full of energy. Given the club atmosphere, the boys were clearly sticking to the more lively tunes in their repertoire, breaking them up with occasional and impressive freestyles. It was when they dropped the hit 'Don’t Waste My Time' that they fully caught the crowd, the entire ground floor repeating the infectious chorus with joy. Once clearly wasn’t enough, so we were treated to it a second time, much to the pleasure of the now very involved onlookers.  

Hit single aside, I found myself struggling to make out exactly what else the duo performed, this is no critic of them or the club itself but I’m not sure the levels were right and the decks seemed up and down throughout the performance. There were times were I, try as I might, simply couldn’t make out what was being said on the mic when either Krept or Konan were doing their thing, and the beats were often drowned out by the lively crowd and music coming from rooms elsewhere. I’ve since discovered that there were problems with the DJ Software on the night, in this case Serato DJ, which is surprising considering how well known Serato is for its stability and performance. These things can’t be helped though. As is the case with new technology, no matter how reliable, it often likes to mess you around before doing what it’s told. Vinyl would have been more stable. Keep things pure, I say. Especially when it comes to music. But I’m simply old fashioned so ignore me.

Regardless of personal preferences and slight technical problems, problems I’m not even sure many people would have picked up on anyway, it was a very enjoyable experience. I thought both Krept & Konan did well to engage the crowd and kept them invested in their performance. By the time their brief appearance was over, 30-45 minutes later, everyone was left buzzing.

A club night with the added bonus of an appearance by multiple MOBO award winners isn’t something to be passed up, and thanks to Shooshh, my itch to see Krept & Konan live after so much binge listening has definitely been scratched... For now.

Keep an eye (and both ears) on their future.