If you know anything about the Los Angeles underground music scene, you know there are two music genres that reign supreme in the underground world; hip-hop and punk rock. This past Friday at the Echoplex, New Jersey-bred artists H09909, made up of theOGM and Eaddy, teamed up with the L.A. punk scene O.G. — N8NOface — to kick off the beginning of their SKIN tour.
“Welcome to real L.A.,” shouted N8N0FACE.
From the time N8NOFACE’s hands touched his drum pad, the mosh pit roundabout immediately fired up. There was a blend of dark wave 80s synth beats mixed with gritty punk, with lyrics echoing: “fuck the establishment, fuck the cops…” Nathan Hose a.k.a N8NOface means more than you can imagine to the L.A. punk and alternative Chicano community. With his ability to be vulnerable on stage — even if he doesn’t want — sharing his stories of heartbreak, battles with mental health and his past drug addiction as well as his years in the game, N8NOface has gained the admiration he rightfully deserves.
From the crowd, “Thank you dad,” yelled from every corner of the room as the mosh pit grew more hectic and chaotic. Thankfully, the young punks made sure to look out for each other in the process of their turn up. When one fell, another would immediately lend a hand and scoop the other up. It’s a silent camaraderie amongst mosh pits in an effort to keep the energy flowing and so that nobody gets trampled in the cross-fire of turbulent motion. It’s a community build on expression, and to N8NOFACE, that’s representation for those that aren’t seen in the eyes of the mainstream.
“Black boy, black boy, black boy of the block.” ~ H09909
Watching the mosh pit makes my heart swell 10 times like the Grinch. For the few alternative Black boys in the pit, it looked like a moment they have been waiting for their whole life. H09909 opened their set with “The World, the Flesh, the Devil,” off their second album Skin, produced by Travis Barker. Mixed in with a melody of Kanye West’s “Father Stretch My hands” — it was bound to be a wild show experience.
In an era of manufactured music, H09909 blends hip-hop and punk rock seamlessly. I don’t know if they realize this but they are changing the face of what the masses know punk rock to be and I, a fellow New Jerseyan, am here for it.
The night was filled with stage divers rushing the stage and launching into the crowd, fans giving H09909 bags of gifts, while girls stood starry-eyed in the front row as Eaddy and TheOGM commanded the stage. It was a beautiful sight. Did I mention, the giant Grim Reaper-esque mic stand TheOGM was using? No? Well, now I am. It was a work of art in itself, fitting his joker-like face paint as he contours around the stage with a flow reminiscent of ODB of Wu-Tang Clan.
One of my favorite fan moments of the night was watching Eaddy give a fan who had stage dove the “Peoples Elbow” as TheOGM and the crowd counted down like we were all apart of WWE’s Wrestlemania.
Ho99o9 and N8N0FACE perform perform next at the Constellation Room in Santa Ana (April 19), tix are still available.
P.S. — Two song suggestions for you: “Already Hate Your Next BF” & “Stress” by N8NOFACE’
“Christopher Dorner” & “The Dope Dealerz” bY Ho99o9
Photography & Words by Asha Moné