Wednesday, December 29, 2010

Fresh Heir, XV, and Chiddy Bang

Genre blending is always risky business. In an attempt to create something new and different, there is always the risk of alienating certain people, especially when attempting to blend genres as different as hip hop and indie. Chiddy Bang, both members who are not even 20, made it big this year with their song ‘Opposite of Adults’ which samples MGMT’s ‘Kids,’ and are trying to repeat that success with ‘Truth,’ which samples Passion Pit’s ‘Better Things.’

The Old Rock House was sold out Thursday night for Chiddy Bang and the crowd couldn’t have been much older than the band members themselves. Most of the audience were indie kids who were venturing out for the first time in the world of hip hop.

The first band of the night was Saint Louis’ own Fresh Heir, who were possibly the highlight of the night, at least until Chiddy Bang took the stage. Fresh Heir were a fusion of jazz, hip hop, and indie music and their repertoire of instruments included a trumpet and a sax, not to mention the several different kinds of percussion instruments and guitars. Fresh Heir packed the stage with their eight members and echoed the big band sounds of jazz with a modern twist.

Next up was rapper XV, a Kansas native who was celebrating his recent signing to Warner Music Group. XV, warmed up the crowd with his classic hip hop and even treated the crowd to a sample of a Pixies song that he rapped over.

Chiddy Bang, which consists of Chidera “Chiddy” Anamege and DJ Xaphoon Jones (formerly Noah Beresin), finally hit the stage to the delight of the crowd. Chiddy took over the mic as Xaphoon Jones took over on the drums and no artist was safe from being sampled by the duo. Radiohead, Passion Pit, Sufjan Stevens, and many more all played the background while Chiddy dropped his beats. Chiddy even free styled with the audience throwing out a series of topics and Chiddy filling in the blanks in a hilarious mad lib all over Tinie Tempah’s ‘Pass Out.’

Chiddy Bang also invited friends and family on stage with them. First up was Chiddy’s brother “Cheeseburger” Don (if you say ‘Chiddy’s brother enough, it turns into Cheeseburger) who was celebrating his 21st birthday. Donnis, who was supposed to play his own set, also joined them on stage because of his plane delay.

The crowd was lit up by Chiddy Bang, and although it may be just a phase among the indie genre, Chiddy band know how to take a formula that is guaranteed to work and make it fresh and all their own.

Chiddy Bang’s album ‘The Swelly Life’ releases September 13.

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