Having disappeared into the unknown for over half a decade, Eskimo Dance made a long anticipated return at Proud2 (formerly Matter) at the o2. Credit to the choice of venue, as it was a fitting reflection to the progression of Grime music which has in the past been marred with controversy. If you take for example, the political uproar surrounding the release of Lethal Bizzle’s ‘Pow’, to more recently-weapons being waved in a grime artist’s video. You could rightly say, trouble has never been beyond arms reach from the genre that has helped shape the careers of artist’s such as; Tinie Tempah, Dizzee Rascal, Wretch 32 & Tinchy Stryder, who have all become recognized in the mainstream as household names. But this night was different.
Championed by Godfather of Grime Wiley, Eskimo Dance enlisted an amazing lineup of DJ’s & MC’s. Ranging from the legendary Marcus Narsty alongside Funk Butcher & MC Ranking, right through to Kiss FM Grime DJ Logan Sama. With an impressive following gained from Various Pirate radio stations that include Rinse FM as well as the ‘Lord Of The Mics’ DVD’s, earlier forms of Eskimo Dance nights had carved a solid spot in the history of underground folklore so memorable that it’s return would be a success. With that said, it was no surprise that Proud2 was at its maximum capacity at 11pm.
Nostalgia was in the air, confidently brought forth by DJ Logan Sama. Wearing a suit & tie, he took the crowd through an hour long set playing the best in new & old Grime tracks. The feeling of a lecturer delivering a well thought out module could be used to describe the DJ’s set. The crowd gave all attention to the DJ in the form of Cheers, raised hands and repetition of lyrics from the tracks whenever he teased down the volume.
A positive mention to the maturity of this event has to be made, as trouble occurs often between artist’s who take lyrical shots at each other. Such acts have often threatened to spill over into something physical and harming, but there was no such chance of this occurring. This night proved to be all about the music and having a good time.
The best of today’s Grime Mc’s were on hand to grace the stage of what was becoming an unforgettable evening. Ghettz led the proceedings with Lil Nasty, Roachee, Ogz all performing their braggadocio filled raps over heavy beats that wet the appetite of the audience for the waiting Boy Better Know. In this particular segment, Ghettz (formerly Ghetto) proved that he still has what it takes to rock a crowd, with reloads occurring each time he would begin to rap.
The headline act Wiley, lived up to his elusive title by making only a brief appearance alongside Boy Better Know. Led by Skepta, JME & Jammer, the crowd were treated to a short Boy Better Know set which included the classic ‘Too Many Man’ featuring Wiley as well as ‘Doing It Again’.
Few more Eskimo Dance night should propel the Grime scene to a larger more credited scene than it is now. With Eskimo Dance, once again Wiley shows us why he is every bit worthy of the “Godfather Of Grime” title