[B]The Pharcyde[/B] actually represent a marginalised breed of rappers  groups like [B]A Tribe Called Quest[/B] and [B]The Roots[/B] who place positivity above grimly authentic street reportage...

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London Kensington Imperial College

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London Kensington Imperial College

It’s hip-hop, kids, but not as [a]Grandmaster Flash[/a] meant it. The Pharcyde are back from LA with a brace of new rhymes and a cabaret selection of old hits, but an uphill task awaits – even though Booty Brown, Slimkid 3, Imani and DJ M Walk do expend more energy than a nuclear power station.

Despite a tendency to resort to tired old-skool showbiz tricks like getting people to throw their hands in the air, The Pharcyde actually represent a marginalised breed of rappers – groups like A Tribe Called Quest and The Roots who place positivity above grimly authentic street reportage. Fun is had by many. Some women invade the stage. And the quartet take all this stoically enough, which, seeing as their avowed intent is to exchange energies with the by-now stoked up crowd, isn’t bad.

So what if the finer points of the evergreen ‘Passing Me By’, the playground taunts of ‘Ya Mama’([I]”your mama’s got a glass eye with a fish in it”[/I]) and a fresh for ’99 tune, ‘Frontline’, are lost on the revellers? Not every rap show should be as heavy as hell.