Injury Reserve: Area Tour

Acts: 
Injury Reserve
Acts: 
Lando Chill
Concert Date: 
Fri, 03/30/2018
Age Restriction: 
No
Location: 
Club Congress

            Injury Reserve is a hip-hop trio hailing from Tempe Arizona. With the two lead rappers being Stepa J. Groggs and Ritchie With a T and Parker Corey working on production, the trio combines the flows and lyricism of jazz rap and modernizes it into the current landscape of hip-hop with their lush production and cacophonous bangers. In their performance at Club Congress, they performed a wide variety of songs spanning from their first album all the way up to their most recent EP, Drive It Like It’s Stolen (2017).

            I have been listening to Injury Reserve since I discovered them back in 2015 with their album Live at the Dentist Office. Their refreshing sound and charismatic performances on songs like “Whatever Dude” and “Everybody Knows” made them one of my favorite groups in hip-hop, albeit I don’t listen to as much hip-hop as I wound like. I had actually seen them back around 2015 when they had a concert in Phoenix where tickets were only $1. Their onstage presence was engaging and absolutely killed that show. With that context, I was very excited to see them again.

            Accompanied by a friend that I had introduced to them, we headed down to Club Congress ready to mosh to some fat bangers. My friend had previously seen both BROCKHAMPTON and Tyler, the Creator in concert and was extremely excited to see another group with a similar appeal. When we arrived, I was surprised by the diversity of people I saw at the concert. With my experience, I can normally anticipate the types of people who would attend a punk concert or an indie concert however that was not the case for Injury Reserve. The entire spectrum of music fans was represented at this concert as indicated by the mix of metal t-shirts, cuffed jeans, and basketball jerseys. I guess the power of phat bangers brings all types of people together.

            The opening act was a local artist named Lando Chill. His style was very cerebral R&B and rap. He was accompanied by a production guy who I can’t for the life of me remember his name and bassist Big Greasy. I really enjoyed the effect having an actual bassist on stage had on the overall performance. Chill’s delivery was smooth and precise while Big Greasy shook you to your core with his bass. Lando Chill ended his set with a spoken word bit about the power and love. Overall, I enjoyed his act and was excited to see Injury Reserve.

            When Injury Reserve came on they did not disappoint. They started with one of my favorite songs from their last full-length album “Oh Sh*t!!!”. This percussive banger hit me right and the face and got me ready for the rest of the concert. Groggs and Ritchie feed off of each other extremely well and engage with the audience to make the energy within the venue tangible. Groggs nasally delivery is contrasted by Ritchies rough voice and complimented by Corey’s production made the entire performance fantastic. As I mentioned before, they played a wide variety of songs from over their entire discography. They also weren’t afraid to play more personal songs that lowered the mood. I enjoyed their ability to transition from braggadocios songs to more reserved tracks. They also implemented a variety of props from a projector, a live video stream of the office, videos shown on multiple computer monitors, fake snow (for the song “North Pole”, a personal favorite) and even a transparent box that reflected the feeling of being trapped that were mentioned in the song. In summation, I loved this concert and was not disappointed at all. I would highly recommend seeing Injury Reserve live, they were absolutely fantastic.    

 

Reviewer: 
Michael Jepson