March is looking like a great freaking month for hip-hop shows in town. Be prepared to snap your necks all month long. And if you're smart, getting a pair of earplugs could salvage your hearing ability, as odd as it sounds to bring earplugs to an event where you listen to music.
On Friday at Kava Lounge, you can warm up to the weekend with some dope, experimental instrumentals from a bunch of local beatsmiths. Illuminauts have built a reputation around town for their dynamic, impassioned live shows, not to mention the work they put into Kill Quanti, a label/collective responsible for many of the beat shows locally. Another artist, Mystery Cave, is kinda the CityBeat music editor's favorite producer ever in the history of the world sorta. My personal fave would be Beatsmith Resist, whose beats seem a little more accessible to the average hip-hop head and also very cinematic. On top of that, proceeds from the show go towards the Alcance Vision Orphanage.
But if you're the sort who needs to hear words with beats, New York rapper-producer Roc Marciano is very good at putting words to his own beats. He'll be performing at the Ruby Room on Saturday. Roc used to be a part of Busta Rhymes's Flipmode Squad. Since escaping the black hole that was the Flipmode Squad, Roc has made a lot of noise in recent years, dropping two solo albums, Marcberg and Reloaded, to critical acclaim. Roc makes a high-art style of boom bap with claustrophobic, Mobb Deep-esque beats and classic New York survival tactics raps. As a bonus, local duo Stuntdouble & Tenshun are opening with funky beats and a bitingly funny take on San Diego life.
Quan Vu Quan Vu is the founder and editor of local music blog sdRAPS.com. He has also written about local and national hip-hop acts for San Diego CityBeat and the San Diego Reader. You can nerd out on rap trivia by becoming BFF's on Facebook or e-mailing him directly.