This weekend I went to see my first live gig in Auckland of 2012.
Ponsonby Social Club is located around half way down the ‘strip’ of Ponsonby Road and was heaving on Saturday night when I went down to watch Eddie Numbers.
The venue has a large courtyard area where the bar begins and continues inside around two thirds of the way down until the last section of the venue, which was reserved for the perfomers of the evening.
This is a chilled and relaxed funky bar which is reflected in the punters. It has an excellent reputation for is choice of live music and DJ’s so it’s not hard to see why this bar is continuously on the ‘top bars’ and ‘must visit’ list of Auckland. Although packed, I never waited long for a drink and there was a good friendly vibe.
However enough about the venue, I came to see Eddie Numbers, a 5 peice Hip Hop band from Auckland, consisting of MC Eddie, Tyla Pere providing Voacals, Regal Drums, Ben Healey Bass/Guitar and Baz DJing.
Baz warms up the crowd with a few classic tunes before the drums kick in to introduce the whole band.
This is a laid back band and the lack of stage meant that they are just playing amongst the crowd, so lots of glass clinking throughout.
Eddie is a truely talented rapper and following his opening Christchurch tribute they go straight into thier first track Numbers Game.
Its a funky sound with soulful vocals from Tyla. Like many alternative hip hop groups they are eclectic and you can hear influences which are wide and far reaching in their tracks.
The rhymes are fast and full of personal reference and humour, which fill the songs with personality, not forgetting to hype the crowd by dropping in some classic rap lines like ’99 problems’. The tune ‘Friends Basket’ talked about guys ending up in the friends zone with girls, which was introduced with funny banter and prooved to be a crowd pleasing track.
The banter and positivity of the groups vibe reminded me of alternative Hip Hop group Ugly Duckling’s live performances.
The use of the bass adds to the funky sound. The crowd jumped and danced along to each track throughout the gig and seemed to enjoy and respond to the bands close interaction and feed off their energy. The band are definitely amougst friends and admirers, there was no shortage of front row females at the gig either.
They finished the gig on ‘Never Rap Again’ which talks about the struggle of today’s artists trying to succeed. It’s their most recent track, which has personal, mature lyrics and a traditional Hip Hop sound.
Have a listen here
Despite a few technical issues, which probably bothered the band more than the crowd, the gig was great and I will definitely be talking about and listen to Eddie Numbers and you should too. New Zealand is lucky to have a group like this so see them now before they start touring further afield.