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Review: Ghostface Killah – 11/06/18 – Riverside, Newcastle

13/06/2018

Accompanied by long time Wu-Tang affiliate Killah Priest, Ghostface Killah got the crowd in the palm of his hands by mixing his solo tracks with spitting bars over classic hip-hop beats…

One of the most successful members of the Wu made his way to Tyneside on an overcast summer Monday, filling out the Riverside to the rafters with old school hip-hop heads, before taking the Geordie Wu-Tang faithful on a sonic trip back to rap’s golden era.

Opening up the night were Newcastle’s very own hip-hop veterans, Gilly Man Giro, King Hippo and Rick Fury. The local trio have been opening up for big time American acts for years and knew exactly what to do to warm up the expectant crowd. Rick Fury is widely regarded as one of the best rappers in the region, at Riverside he seemed to bounce around the stage, fully engulfed in the music whilst spitting silky smooth flows with dead-eye precision.

After what felt like an eternity waiting two back to back DJ’s sets to be over, the Wu-Tang legend in the flesh finally jumped on the stage to an almighty roar.  Accompanied by long time Wu-Tang affiliate Killah Priest, Ghostface Killah got the crowd in the palm of his hands by mixing his solo tracks with spitting bars over classic hip-hop beats like Mobb Deep’s “Shook Ones Pt.2” and Biz Markie’s “Just A Friend”.

Come the halfway point in the set the crowd, the majority head to toe in yellow Wu-Tang W’s, were craving some classic Wu tracks from Ghostface – and he was about to give them what they wanted, but they’d have to work for it…

“OK, so who knows ODB and Method Man’s verses on Protect Ya Neck? We need you up here now,” Ghostface announced to the crowd. “You need to know all of the lyrics though and no drunks, we want to do this properly,” added Priest, and he wasn’t kidding.

The opportunity to perform on stage with hip-hop royalty had every Wu fan wanting a piece, but after two fans got on stage then were asked to leave for being too drunk, this idea was beginning to look like a bad one. “I’m proud to be in Newcastle and I want this to be special for you, that’s why we don’t need drunks, I want you to boo them if they mess up,” declared Ghostface after killing the beat.

Finally, the chosen two were on stage, a woman doing Method Man’s verse and a man doing ODB’s. The girl killed it, sending the crowd crazy and putting the pressure on the remaining fan.

Given the recent Kendrick Lamar fan incident, many in the venue were holding their breath as a white guy prepared to spit a verse with a prevalent ‘N’ bomb in it. Thankfully, he had the presence of mind not to say it and again killed it, leading to Ghostface running through some classic Wu tracks and bringing an end to an incredible night that felt like a celebration of ‘real’ hip-hop.

WORDS: JOHNATHAN RAMSAY

PHOTOS: VICTORIA LING 

 

To see more of Ghostface’s Riverside performance, go and check out our Gig Gallery now… 

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