KEXP Ballard Day @ Sunset Tavern: Shabazz Palaces

photos by Dave Lichterman

Mysterious rap collective Shabazz Palaces hails from Seattle, like so many greats do, and their contentment to stay in the shadows causes intrigue, especially when you think about the way Odd Future is going about their publicity. But the Palaces are different — their lyrics are more literate, their website is a sparkling enigma, and their song titles are eerie and disquieting (“32 leaves dipped in blackness making clouds forming altered carbon”).

Their music itself is also something altogether different from the mainstream. Drums hit on off-beats, 80’s horror synthesizers work their way up through the mix, and a mixture of vocals stumble over each other, each treading their own path. It’s experimental, deeply literate songwriting, but packaged in a format that makes it nonetheless grooving and head-nodding.

And at the Sunset Tavern, Shabazz Palaces were perhaps at their tightest yet. The line snaking down the sidewalk just before their set told the story of their growing success. Shabazz is a band to watch. And watch, cheer and have a good time, the audience did during the most popular performance all day! Check out the photos here:

View more photos here.

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One Comment

  1. twitter trafic
    Posted May 21, 2011 at 9:23 am | Permalink

    i like the guy!

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