Living Legends
Sat April 23
8 NW 6th

Take a moment and contemplate for a second the character of our beloved West Coast's hiphop. While the first images to emerge may be chiefly in the vein of razor-creased khakis, gleaming Dayton spokes, and Chuck Taylors, the other side of that coin is the quasi-spiritual rhyme hustler, perhaps best exemplified by Cali's Living Legends.

The LL crew's nucleus was the Mystik Journeymen (Sunspot Jonz and Luckyiam PSC) and the 3 Melancholy Gypsies (Murs, Eligh, and Scarub), with Grouch, Bicasso, Aesop, and Arata filtering in thru a series of coincidences, hookups, and acquaintances; a process as fittingly organic as the Legends' music.

The Legends' collective catalog contains influences from all over the map (possibly owing to their relentless touring schedule) while staying true to their East Oakland/Los Angeles roots… typically pretty simple drum patterns, non sequitur samples and strong basslines frosted with the skyward-gazing perspectives of the crew. It's hiphop made by archetypal Everymen, and informed by Hendrix, Cali bud, couch surfing, and endless SoCal concrete, not to mention the worldwide tape hustle they invented out of necessity.

Their newest LP as a collective, Classic, contains some of their most focused and mature work yet, fully displaying the accrued momentum of their steady motion, from Grouch and Eligh's acclaimed collaboration LPs to Murs' NYC validation via Def Jux. With even more solos, team-ups, and tours coming, something tells me we haven't even seen their best shit yet.