London E2 On The Rocks

Has it finished yet? Did it even start?...

Has it finished yet? Did it even start? Er, you join us in the early hours of Saturday in a charming little club unchanged since the 1950s called, fittingly for tonight, On The Rocks. At the moment, a rapper named Zoobie is giving it large over some “drum’n’bass jungle”. We’ve met an MC called the Sex Doctor – [I]”I’m runnin’ out of patients”[/I] (geddit?) – and the show’s star, the “Jewish MC from East Berlin”, Chilly Gonzales, he of the velour tracksuit top and chunky gold necklace, is taking to the stage whenever he feels a rap coming on.

This is Gonzales, then: the charismatic Canadian ex-pat hip-hopper from Germany, signed to avant-electronica imprint Kitty Yo, the title of whose excellent debut single for the label, ‘OP – Original Prankster’, sums up nicely his cabaret-friendly routine. To his left, dressed like an amateur WWF contender, is his partner in rhyme, Musical Truth, and for the last hour they’ve been telling it like it is in Gonzales World.

And, [I]”Fuck London/Fuck Berlin/ ‘Cos Shinertown is the state we’re in!”[/I] is what they’re saying, as Chilly G stoops over a tiny keyboard and The Truth ekes out beats, badly, on drums and a drum machine. Every so often, members of the audience clamber up and duet with Gonzales, simply, it seems, because they want to. There is no plan, possibly we hear the track ‘Worst MC’, but it doesn’t matter. Nothing makes sense and Gonzales’ work for the night is done. Expect great things.

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