In concert: Ana Tijoux at Liv
By Mark Jenkins
Ana Tijoux sports a Public Enemy T-shirt in the video for "1977,'' her latest album's title track, but her style owes more to A Tribe Called Quest. During a 40-minute set Thursday night at Liv, the Franco-Chilean hip-hopper sounded a bit more Bomb Squad than on her recordings. Yet even her most frantic raps were supported by spare beats and simple loops of jazzy bass, sax or flute.
Tijoux rapped primarily in Spanish, at a speed not optimal for non-native speakers. But she talked fluently in English between numbers, and worked such words phrases as "OK'' and "Washington DC'' into her autobiographical material. (She also tried out a few English words that can't be repeated here.) At times, Tijoux gave evidence of being able to sing, but usually she chattered, her hands moving almost as fast as her mouth.
(Read the rest of this review and view more photos, after the jump)
The conversation wasn't entirely one-sided. Tijoux pulled the modestly sized but enthusiastic crowd into the act with call-and-response chants, and traded lines with Bronx-based rapper Rodstarz. (He's a member of Rebel Diaz, which preceded Tijoux with a set that was bilingual and explicitly political.) The dialogue was most intense on "Sube,'' which worked better onstage than "1977.'' The latter suffered from a false start, but also from a trip-hopped Spaghetti Western backing track that upstaged the vocals. No such problem affected the encore, in which Tijoux freestyled as if she were really saying something -- even if not everyone in the club knew what it was.
July 16, 2010; 11:20 AM ET
Categories: In concert | Tags: Ana Tijoux
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