I was quite shocked to calculate it was nearly 15 years ago when I last saw De La Soul @ Glastonbury Festival in 2003; it’s fair to say that both I and the band have grown-up a fair amount in that time. Veterans of the golden age of Hip Hop, De La Soul, have not lost any of their skills when it comes to getting the party started, coming straight out of the blocks at Cardiff’s Tramshed with Verbal Clap, making sure the audience were bouncing from the very beginning. Masters of the old school call:repeat style, MCs Posdnuos and Trugoy had the 90’s hip hop-ers audience, eating out of their hands by the time they slowed things down a little with a personal favourite of mine, Eye Know.
It was a welcome surprise when the regular crew were joined on stage by fellow Native Tongues collective member, Dres from Black Sheep, promoting his new solo work but also giving us some classic Black Sheep The Choice Is Yours (Revisited) amongst others I couldn’t necessarily name. Dres stayed on stage for most of the performance, backing up his fellow Native Tongues alumni which did beg the question why he didn’t take part in a support show before the main act, surely that would’ve made sense?
De La Soul are one of those crews that landed hard with 3 Feet High and Rising, got better and more political as they developed but then faded away a little, coming back strong last year with their latest collaboration album and the Anonymous nobody…; and that pretty much sums up this gig, they came out strong, faded a little in the middle but finished strong with crowd favourite from their collaboration with the Gorrilaz Feel Good Inc. On the whole this was an enjoyable hip hop show but at just over an hour with a very brief encore I couldn’t help feel a little cheated, I suppose it can’t hurt to leave us wanting more.