DJ Shadow and Cut Chemist Spin Hip-Hop Gold

Brooklyn Bowl, Sept. 29


Photo by Erik Kabik/

Here’s how you know DJ Shadow and Cut Chemist’s tribute to hip-hip pioneer Afrika Bambaataa was a big deal: Other DJs came out to see it. Local DJs Aurajin, Rex Dart and Style all took a night off from possible paid work to watch two of the world’s best turntablists work their magic with records from Bambaataa’s own collection. Using six decks, a hypnotic video mix by Ben Stokes and their preternatural gifts for scratching, mixing and sampling on the fly, Shadow and Chemist created little short of a funky-assed Ken Burns documentary on the birth of hip-hop. Every aspect of Bambaataa’s influence was celebrated over the course of a delirious, nearly two-hour set, from his love of rare beats to his restless experimentation (which Shadow and Chemist referenced more or less directly, by hammering away at ancient drum machines). More than a party, more than an education, this show was damned close to a holy revival. ★★★★★

Photos by Erik Kabik/