Souls of Mischief - Electric Circus, Edinburgh, Tue 13 Mar
Hip hop pioneers refuse to rest on their laurels
As creators of a classic 90s hip hop hit (‘93 til Infinity’), it would be easy for Souls of Mischief to tour on the back of that alone. However, the California-natives did not disappoint the sold-out crowd with a dull and lazy performance, like some of their golden age hip hop peers find acceptable to do. Instead, they treated fans to an engaging and ardent show.
The Oakland rappers didn’t appear on stage until 10.30 – late for a Tuesday gig. By this point, the crowd had been hyped up by Edinburgh MC Silvertongue’s witty lyrics and impressive freestyle.
Souls of Mischief’s Opio, Phesto and Tajai took to the stage (A-Plus hasn’t appeared on any of the tour) and put up their Hieroglyphics collective hand sign to their followers, who signalled back.
The threesome performed material from their five albums, plus Hieroglyphics’ numbers and tracks from Phesto’s new album Background Check. Rapping over boom-bap beats, the veteran MCs captured an era and represented hip hop at its greatest.
The group spoke out, saying they ‘came a long way to be on this stage’ because they ‘love hip hop’. They also got a few laughs when they announced they had ‘Buckfast up in the back’.
Next year will be the 20th anniversary of the track that made them famous. Souls of Mischief’s zeal and commitment proves why they are still around. When they said ‘93 til Infinity’, they meant it.