***GUEST REVIEW*** (by @wendiwrites)
As soon as it was announced in January that the So Solid Crew would be putting on a reunion concert, comments on the social networks were split between people being excited about it, and people automatically assuming that it would be a hot ghetto mess. Fortunately I fell into the former category, and I’m so glad I did!
Doors opened at 7pm and as you’d probably expect, the process of getting into the O2 building itself wasn’t as straight-forward as it was when I came to see New Kids On The Block. There were police at the top of the escalators at North Greenwich station, then a long queue outside (apparently for those with bags) as well as two police vans on either side of the entrance. Inside the O2 we had to walk through the metal detectors, then to get into Indigo2 we had to have our bags go through the scanners. I felt it only right to ask one of the bag check guys if our flight was on schedule.
At around 8.35 the host came on stage to start hyping up the audience, and a short while later he introduced the first of the So Solid Crew, DJ Oxide on the decks. Oxide took us back to the good old days of UK Garage. Most of us who were seated on the balcony were on our feet, and those standing on the ground floor just made it look like a rave. I was in my zone when he played ‘Pulse X’ and ‘I Don’t Smoke The Reefer’ – my jams!! After that little set, the host came back on to hype us up a little more and then introduced the So. Solid. Crewwwwwwww!
courtesy of pardonmyblog.co.uk
The vocal intro from their 2001 album ‘They Don’t Know’ was played, which then led into the famous sirens from Casualty and then the N the E the U T the R the I N with the O burst on to the stage to perform ‘Bound For The Reload.’ It was on! (Sidenote: Neutrino’s body now… *fans herself*). Next we heard the famous beat for ‘Oh No’ and Romeo (who changed his dapper suits about 3 times during the night) and Lisa Maffia came on stage to perform that and the remixed version. We were bubblin’ hard! That was followed by Megaman, MAC and Face performing ‘Haters’, then Neutrino coming back for ‘Up Middle Finger’. Unfortunately they didn’t do the best part of that tune: “When I say, you say, we say, they say MAKE SOME NOISE!” Never mind, we were already making noise. (During this time we spotted Chipmunk at the seats two rows in front of us, and Adam Deacon walking up the stairs on our left side).
Asher D came on to perform ‘Woah’, and other songs featured were ‘Rap Dis,’ (yes Harvey was there too) ‘Since You Went Away,’ ‘So Grimey’ (for which they had three girls dancing on stage, looking like they were pulled from any brothel – a bit random), ‘Deeper,’ ‘No Good 4 Me,’ and ‘Back In The Day.’ Swiss tugged at the heartstrings with his hit ‘Cry’ and JD did ‘Signal,’ then ‘It’s All Over,’ with Lisa Maffia. Some of the highlights were Chipmunk (one of the special guests) performing a Movado song with Swiss, Megaman introducing us to his lookalike son, and one of my favourite moments; three female dancers performing an African-inspired routine to the instrumental of ‘Dilemma’ (one of the sexiest beats ever!).
However, the best moment came when the crew performed ‘They Don’t Know.’ It was followed by the introduction to the remix ‘Envy’ with Ms Dynamite’s vocals, and excitement was brewing in my belly. Then Megaman tried to kill it by telling us that she was unable to make it and he wants us to sing her parts in the song, so after a rewind we all sang along with “Why dem all waaatching me/ Is it pure jeaaaalouseee yay..” When it got to her verse – “When I step up on the microphone/explosive/ people learn to pimp an play like they know dis” – she came out on to the stage and everyone went crazy! She only performed for that song, but it was a bit of icing on an enjoyable cake.
Of course we all know what the finale song was right? Just before it started, Mega introduced us to the not-so-little kids we see and hear at the start ’21 Seconds’, then the whole crew came out to perform their number one hit, before closing the show with their ‘ritual’ outro.
The So Solid Crew did not disappoint at all. They all looked as though they haven’t really aged in the last 10+ years (Skat D seemed to be the only member missing), the good vibe energy were there, and hopefully the police wasted their time that night.