Friday 18 Apr

Dustin Prinz - Eleven

Few musicians take the time to master their instrument in the way that Oklahoma City singer-songwriter Dustin Prinz has; he’s a guitar virtuoso in every sense of the word, and Eleven gives him the chance to show just how far he can push that skill.
04/15/2014 | Comments 0

Horse Thief – Fear in Bliss

Listening to Horse Thief’s previous release — the haphazardly melodramatic Grow Deep, Grow Wild — felt like a chore. Whatever potential the Oklahoma City folk-pop act demonstrated on the EP was obscured behind a formulaic, contrived and ultimately hollow cloud. But it at least offered a glimmer of promise for a band consisting of, frankly, five pretty talented dudes. Critics saw it; the band’s management saw it; its current label, Bella Union, saw it; and its increasingly fervid fan base saw it.
04/08/2014 | Comments 0

Colourmusic — May You Marry Rich

There’s always a sense of danger when debuting songs in a live setting and playing them well. Without having heard the studio versions, expectations are set according to the live incarnations. But capturing the breadth of free-flowing atmosphere and sheer volume on a disc, vinyl or digital file isn’t the easiest thing to do, especially for a band as vociferous as Colourmusic.
04/01/2014 | Comments 0

Em and the MotherSuperiors — Churches into Theaters

As titles go, Churches into Theaters is an apt descriptor for the debut album from Oklahoma City rockers Em and the MotherSuperiors. It’s a reverential record, one that shares the gospel of classic rock, blues and soul but embraces the need to refashion it for modern times, channeling The Dead Weather, Grace Potter and Cage the Elephant along the way.
03/25/2014 | Comments 0

Rachel Brashear — Revolution

Rachel Brashear’s second EP, Revolution, starts with a kick to the shins.
03/18/2014 | Comments 0
Home · Articles · Music · Music · Freddie vs. all

Freddie vs. all

Freddie Gibbs raps against mindless pop, corporations and heck, even the world. But you’ll love him.

Joshua Boydston March 30th, 2011

Freddie Gibbs with Big K.R.I.T., Smoke DZA, Josh Sallee and more
8 p.m. Sunday
XIIIX Lounge, 1310 N.W. 25th
$15 advance, $18 door

Freddie Gibbs’ story is one like many rappers before him: He was a 20something who had taken up drug dealing ... and wound up a convicted felon, before music saved him.

“It gave me something to focus on, something I love. That had always been my problem ... I just didn’t have a passion for anything,” Gibbs said. “I didn’t seek to be in the music industry or rap or anything of that nature growing up. It just fell into my lap. That’s how God works sometimes.”

Appearing Sunday at XIIIX Lounge (formerly Kamp’s Deli & Market), Gibbs played football at Ball State before grades forced him out and back to his native Gary, Ind. It was then and there that he got into dealing, and he’s continued to share his experiences there — good and bad — despite having it behind.

The gritty, harsh reality of growing up poor and in a crime-addled city is ever-present in his music, and reflects the hard times the nation is seeing at large.

“People are attracted to authenticity. They want to see something real,” Gibbs said. “We are in a recession, and I hate to label myself as a ‘recession rapper,’ but people think I’m like Robin Hood or something. People need an underdog to root for because they are underdogs in their own right.”

He’s unleashed a wave of bluecollar friendly tracks, including “National Anthem” and “Oil Money,” which have become a rally cry for the working class, earning raves while not compromising his vision and desire for something real, tough and emotional.

“It ain’t some shit where I got a catchy-ass beat and all you like is the beat and the hook, and you don’t give a fuck about what I’m talking about,” Gibbs said. “People are really zoning in and listening to what I’m saying wordfor-word.”

He’s done most of it without a label; he signed with Interscope in 2006 before the deal flamed out without a release. Gibbs has gone it alone ever since, releasing a flurry of mixtapes and EPs on his own means.

“I feel like artists these days don’t realize their self-worth. Without you, shit don’t move. Without me, there ain’t no music, no shows, ain’t nothing,” he said. “I’m worth enough to myself to not sign everything away to a label.”

It’s about all about being cautious and conscientious in selecting his next move. His debut full-length will likely see a major label — on his terms, of course — within the year, with more projects in between. He promised the studio album will be worth the wait, making the sort of statement that will leave a lasting impression.

“I’m slow to commit. The people that support my shit deserve my best for that first, real big splash I’m going to make,” Gibbs said. “I’m not going to put something out less than that standard. Everything’s got to be calculated. It’s a long career, and if you do everything right, you can make it even longer.”

  • Currently 3.5/5 Stars.
  • 1
  • 2
  • 3
  • 4
  • 5