Credits: Stephen Carradini
Liveblogging is fraught with some trepidation for me, because there is no editing process. The posts, for good or ill, are direct dispatches; facts go unchecked, style goes uncultivated, worry that I'm being clear sets in. But that's all out the window for this post. All you need to know is this: Josh Sallee is very, very good at rap, and you should listen to his music regardless of what you think about rap. Read on for some effusive praise.
Sallee is the sort of rapper whose skill feeds his stage presence and vice versa for an impressive loop: The confidence he has in his ridiculously speedy rapping shows in his stage moves. Bouncing back and forth across the stage, shooting sly grins into the audience, and holding the hand of a girl in the front row were just some moves in his arsenal. I am rarely transfixed by a musical performer, but Sallee's impassioned performance commanded my undivided attention. At one point, he shoved the microphone in my face to yell the chorus of a song; I was so surprised the fourth wall had been broken that I was too stunned to say anything. (The correct answer was "That shit great!")
Sallee had a DJ and a drummer with him, and the drummer greatly enhanced both the visual and visceral appeal of the performance: the set felt more concrete with the presence of acoustic instrumentation. It gave even more punch to Sallee's already deft, kinetic backing beats.
It doesn't take much knowledge of rap to understand that Josh Sallee is incredible. His rapidfire raps, tight control of rhythm and wow-factor showmanship make him an artist not to be missed, whether you like the genre. It's simply mesmerizing to watch him go.