RECAP: Critical Beatdown at The Kava Lounge

By | May 13, 2012 at 11:02 pm | No comments | Featured Post, Recaps | Tags: , , , , , , , , ,

From what I hear, you gotta search the underground out in San Diego. You can’t just pop up in the gas lamp district and see Gaslamp Killer rocking live beat sets every night. I have heard of a couple spots that embrace freshness though, like the Wit’s End and 4th & Broadway. One other spot in San Diego that is renowned for keeping things trill is a monthly called Critical Beatdown at the Kava Lounge.

ILLsociety was in the house to check out May’s rendition of the show. For those who don’t know, it’s a night of live beats organized by DJ Pound, Mike Gao, eLan and DJ Cleancut. There were several artists featured on the bill, including Richmond Virginia’s own Ohbliv. There was also one of Europe’s top producers rocking. His name is fLako, and he represents for Project Mooncircle. Also one of Tokyo’s finest got down with the get down. Bun aka Fumitake Tamura was there keeping the beats cinematic. There were B.anging S.ub S.onics, screwed and chopped loops, and spine tingling drum patterns. The Kava Lounge had an assortment of drinks, from Tipsy Gypsies, to Mint Mojitos. Everything was purple, the disco balls were shimmering and the ceilings were decorated with tree roots and what appeared to be hanging silk.

As the producers took to the stage, the energy was electric. Ohbliv got down on the SP-404, playing dirty drum breaks with soul samples for an update on the vintage boom bap acoustic. Fumitake Tamura put the crowd in a trance with some trip hop that catapulted into deep orchestras of electronic noise. His entire set was seamless. Tamura left the crowd hungry for more beats as he humbly bowed on stage to close out his performance. Luckily fLako was still on deck in the line-up. His production range was incredible and took the crowd on a ride all across the plateaus of modern funk. There were glitches and lo-fi resonance amongst beautiful compositions and lavish beats. Everything was melded together perfectly into one head-banging boogie. This is the reason why he’s championed by the likes of Hudson Mohawke. Words are inadequate to describe the sounds of music, sometimes it is best just to hear it for yourself.

The beats were out of this world, and the producers came from across the planet to play live in San Diego that night. The roots of beat culture were represented properly and the party popped like a bottle of expensive champagne. Big ups to everyone involved in this event, it was definitely one to remember. Make sure you check out the Critical Beatdown every 1st Thursday at the Kava Lounge next time you are in Daygo. You can check out music from all of the producers online at the following links and get a taste of beat culture for yourself.

Bun aka Fumitake Tamura:

-Ya man’s… “Drop Jewelz”
All Photos by Jenny B

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