Per usual, FYF Fest had a lot of returning acts to the fold in 2015, and to some people it was a turnoff to see so many of the same names as in previous years. But if rising hip-hop juggernauts Run the Jewels proved something, it’s that maybe Goldenvoice got something right: why not bring people back that have growing fanbases and have already proven they can ignite a crowd?
Since last year’s set at FYF, Atlanta’s Killer Mike and NYC’s El-P have done nothing but climb into more of the public’s conscious. They were one of the buzziest acts at SXSW this year and hit the festival circuit as hard as anyone and it’s paid off dividends. Hell, they’ve got a weekly radio show on the new Apple Beats 1 station.
RTJ pulled out the big guns with their main stage performance. They were joined by Rage Against the Machine’s Zack de la Rocha, blink-182’s Travis Barker, as well as Three 6 Mafia’s Gangsta Boo at various points during their set, bringing it to the level of expectations they set with their performance at Coachella earlier this year.
More than just lighting up crowds with their raps, Run the Jewels make powerful statements through their words and their music that has connected with people of all demographics. While some hip-hop crowds can breed negativity, I’ve only ever seen positive vibes at an RTJ set and Saturday at FYF was no exception.
“Thank you so much for giving a shit about us,” said El-P during a break between songs. “A Christmas F*ckin Miracle” capped off their explosive set and sent people to Kanye West’s set with high expectations of what a killer hip-hop set should look like.
Words: Mark E. Ortega
Photography: Wes Marsala
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