STANLEY Odd and Hector Bizerk may sound like characters from the Beano but are, in fact, two kindred hip-hop bands from either end of the M8, fronted by MCs who rap in broad Scottish accents.
While attuning to their sound might require some adjustment of cultural prejudices, it does make it very easy for a home crowd to get the gist of their patter.
Both acts blended humorous storytelling, social comment and atypical musical backing – Hector Bizerk’s Party At A&E and Stanley Odd’s Pure Antihero Material being among the more instantly evocative numbers. The audience were on board well before the latter’s invitation to a nationwide pub crawl that is Join The Club and took great relish in turning both bands’ cartoony names into “here we go”-style terrace chants.
But while Glasgow contingent Hector Bizerk, who have expanded their core line-up of Royston rapper Louie Deadlife and drummer Audrey Tait to incorporate meaty, funky basslines and characterful synth effects, convinced more as a unit, Edinburgh six-piece Stanley Odd, whose second album, Reject, is on this year’s SAY Award shortlist, put on more of a performance.
There was something of the slam poet about rapper MC Solareye, whose earnest enunciations were précised in the call-and-response vocal hooklines of shrill singer Veronika Electronika, and dispatched over the somewhat anachronistic soul-rock backing supplied by the rest of the group, to create a distinctly Scot-hop style.