The all-ages event started a little after 5PM with Khingz as host and Brothers From Another performing first to a tiny underage crowd, which was possibly the reaction to the local Seafair events and the capitalizing of Seattle sunshine by others. Despite the lack in attendance, Brothers From Another did not disappoint. Their beady-eyed fans chimed along with their peppy and spirited lyrics. The group is composed of Breez and Goonstar, ambitious and skilled students from Seattle who are headed back to California for college once the summer’s over.
Second to the stage was one of Seattle’s finest hidden gems & previous winners of the EMP Sound Off! Competition, Dyno Jamz. In similar style as The Physics, Dyno Jamz is a collective and comes complete with MCs, drums, bass, keyboardist, trumpet, and trombone players. Dyno Jamz brought a sophistication to the stage which the previous performance lacked. Their mature sound comes surprisingly from all college students or recent college graduates from Seattle’s University of Washington. The Experience Music Project described them affectively suggesting, “think Miles Davis meets De La Soul and you’ve got Dyno Jamz—bringing West Coast cool jazz to East Coast 80s hip-hop.” The group also performed a Nu Era track, which is a side project from a few of the Dyno Jamz members with the full band.
Grynch by Bebe Besch
Grynch, the “King of Ballard,” (which he apparently “hates being called,” joked Khingz) took the stage shortly after with DJ Nphared. The momentum of his set was slow to start, but picked up while performing his new single “Mr. Rogers,” a nostalgic play-on-words from the children’s show, which was instantly beloved by fans in the crowd. Grynch invited the boys of BFA back on stage for a second time to help with their song “Maggie Was Fly” which will be available on BFA’s new project, Quality of Living, starting September 1st. Grynch’s lyrics can be quite playful in nature, but you wouldn’t notice if you were judging just on his stage presence – he takes his craft seriously, but fast-forward to the closing of the set with his most-hyped track “My Volvo,” and you can see even a boy from Ballard can get down. The room was filled with folks who knew the entire song by heart, and also those who were giving it their best dance move – including BFA’s DJ who pulled out the most vibrant “lawn-mower” I’ve seen in years.
Kicking off the 21+ show, Fly Moon Royalty hit the packed venue with their colorful and fierce collection of songs such as their single “Lemonade”. The duo is made up of Action Jackson who is a jack-of-all-trades being the producer, DJ and emcee, and Miss Adraboo who graced their set with elegant and passionate vocals. Their electro-soul style was a perfect match to set the ambience for the rest of the night’s eclectic performers.
The Physics’ own sweethearts and backup vocalists, Mario & Malice Sweet took the stage next. They performed a handful of songs off of their album Happy 2 Year, released earlier this Spring. Both powerful vocalists on their own, the couple delivered soulful harmonious ballads and ended on their danceable “Faster than the Speed of Light”. They were the first act of the day to have fans screaming in applause; multiple times throughout their set a handful of woman near the front yelled, “I love you Malice!”
Hi-Life Soundsystem, with previous host Khingz, really brought the energy back to the crowd right in time before The Physics’ second set. Their tracks were designed to make the audience dance, which everyone did. Khingz threatened, “If I don’t see you dancing to this next song…a weird, black ninja is going to find you!” Free-style verses delivered to specific people in the crowd, mixed with High-Life Soundsystem’s own humorous dance moves on stage made their performance incredibly human. Entertaining comes natural to this group; the atmosphere felt more like Hi-Life Soundsystem was putting on a show for a packed house full of their close friends rather than fans. This feeling amplified when the band jumped into the crowd for their last song and had the entire floor became a massive dance party.
Leading into the headlining act, 21+ host Larry Mizell Jr. reminded everyone how thankful we should be to have “so much genuine talent” in Seattle. Many other local favorites could be spotted amongst the crowd, talents Macklemore and members of the Blue Scholars were there for support.
The crowds were ecstatic when The Physics made their way out to the stage. They opened with their brand-new album title track, “Love is a Business,” and headed straight into their summertime jam “Coronas on Madrona” – a fan favorite. Other songs from their new album such as “Seward Park,” “Delusions of Grandeur” & “Chalk up Tomorrow” were preformed, while surprisingly their latest single, “These Moments,” was noticeably missing from the set list. The new tracks highlighted Thig Nat’seloquent rhyming deliverance with producer Justo’s (Just d’amato) intelligent beats. Paired with a full band including Mario & Malice Sweet and notable trumpet player Owuor Arunga, the new tracks felt exceptionally rich. LA (Language Arts) & The Good Sin both lent a few verses alongside The Physics’ emcees Thig Nat and Monk Wordsmith. Oldies like “I Heart Beer,” and “I Just Wanna Beat” were welcomed by long-time fans. The trio was most powerful in stage presence when all three (Thig Nat, Monk Wordsmith, & Justo) were stage front for songs like “Ready for We,” where the crowd jumped and danced along with them to the catchy chorus.
Love Is A Business will surely emerge as a classic hip-hop album in the years to come out of Seattle and not solely because of the album’s creativity and quality. It could stand alone easily, but experiencing album release party like these suggests so much more. As part of the audience you felt like you were there not only supporting a talented local act, but contributing to the bigger support of your own community. The groups’ chemistry was in full force; and as a fan you couldn’t help but walk away from their shows with your own sense of pride, knowing that this group comes from the city you live in. The support for The Physics was electric in the room and if these are the sort of people and fans The Physics are used to creating their musical business with, then what a sweet business it is.
1. Love is a Business
2. Coronas on Madrona
3. Chalk up Tomorrow
4. I Heart Beer
5. Delusions of Grandeur
6. I Just Wanna Beat
7. Back Track
8. Seward Park
9. Boo’d Up
10. Ready For We
11. Most Days
If you missed out on them this time around, The Physics are set to support Blue Scholars for a few tour dates this Fall, those dates will be announced soon!
Check out “Most Days” filmed at the Love Is A Business release shows: