Z-Trip @ Prince Bandroom
It was 1988 when Stutter Rap replaced Man Of Colours on high rotation in the Donaldson household. The Neighbours sample, so ridiculous, it threw me in a spin and from then on rap, beats and samples would be a rich source of musical wonderment.
All shapes and sizes filled a reduced Prince Bandroom for similar thrills; a night of classic cuts and combinations from Zach Sciacca (better known as Z-Trip), American DJ and producer. His DJ skills, track selection and hip hop soul putting him up there with the best. Think Mix Master Mike meets Girl Talk meets Grandmaster Flash.
DJ Flagrant wet the appetite early, his scratching finesse throughout Shake Your Rump a highlight. Missy Elliott’s Work It introducing Stardust’s Music Sounds Better With You before Stevie Wonder’s Signed, Sealed, Delivered fed some crazy horn blasts. Flagrant didn’t stop there; toasting the crowd with Ring Ring Ring into The Seed (2.0), Gnarls Barkley’s Crazy, Gorillaz’ Feel Good Inc, some Jungle Brothers and finally M.I.A’s Paper Planes. It was the perfect tourniquet for the fact that Z-Trip was now over 30 minutes late.
After some sincere apologies, a computer system reboot and a little more local flavours from Flagrant, Z-Trip was ready to celebrate. Paying homage to the venue with Purple Rain, and a little soft love in Bill Withers’ Ain’t No Sunshine before the audio assault began with one of the most sampled cuts in hip-hop history, Michael Viner’s Incredible Bongo Band Bongo Rock.
The bar was completely aborted for the dance floor as Get Your Freak On beckoned and So What’cha Want bled into Back In Black’s surging riffs; a tribute to MCA screening in the background. Z-Trip tore through Dr Dre, Tupac, Gorillaz, Ol’ Dirty Bastard, A Tribe Called Quest, Daft Punk and Kanye West before releasing the opening riffs of Alice In Chains’ Man In The Box and Boston’s classic More Than A Feeling.
Using his Mac for tracks and turntables to scratch, it was his 808 that cranked big bouncing bass and effects, demonstrating Z-Trip’s own musical abilities to do more than simply mix. The balance was skillful; opting for the Etta James original of Good Feeling instead of the over-killed Flo Rida. Fleetwood Mac’s original The Chain into Bone Thug’s N Harmony’s Wind Blow, rocking Dem Franchize Boys’ Lean Wit It, Rock Wit It for the real hip-hoppers before Santigold, Luniz’s I Got 5 On It and Sabotage. DJ Kool’s Let Me Clear My Throat hailed down on Eye Of The Tiger, as Mortal Kombat ‘finish him’ moments were projected behind.
Certainly no novelty act, Z-Trip mixed a thoughtful and focused set that ended with Fleet Foxes and 360. It worked!
BY JOHN DONALDSON
LOVED: Seeing baggy jeans again.
HATED: That it wasn’t the weekend.
DRANK: James Boags. They were out of Cristal!