Lady Sovereign in Seattle      

written by Joshua Stohl, November 2006    
The 5 foot 1 female rap sensation from the UK captivated the Seattle audience with plenty of fervor and British charm. The 19 year old held down the stage with ego-driven antics and an accent that polluted fans from wall to wall. Lady Sovereign was backed by a drummer, bassist and DJ that provided what was needed: heavy grime beats, chunky bass lines, and that 2-step momentum necessary to capture the UK garage-rap style that has been increasingly prevalent.

Her witty charisma, young age, and tough appearance seemed to serve like a gimmick in a way, but the crowd ate it up and shook their heads to the gritty beats while screaming along with Lady. Her rhymes were difficult to understand in the club, but she delivered them with a solid flow and tended to scream them when deemed vital. Her style is certainly unique to the US, the entire UK rap circuit has its own set of circumstances and flavor that seems to be slowly flooding Americans’ sound waves, but with apprehension at the same time.

Lady Sovereign had the club hopping when she covered the Sex Pistols’ “Pretty Vacant” in which the crowd erupted in a roar of punk enthusiasm. Her DJ had the 1200’s locked down along with the drummer who performed a couple of solos in between songs. Sovereign kept telling him to do so while she made fun of America and seduced fans with her UK charm. Her 45 minute set was quick and to the point with banging beat after beat. Her hit single, “Love me or hate me” had the crowd moving along to her poppy chorus that everyone could recite after hearing it one time through. It was obvious she was comfortable behind the mic, perhaps her stunner shades helped out along with fans’ consistent chants of praise! It was her encore that sparked my ear. She and her mates came out and erupted into a rough-edged break beat laced with Ladys raps that resembled a Bone-Thugs-style menacing tone. Overall, the show was intense and proved that a midget from the UK can hold down a sold out venue.

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