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Rhymes From the Underground 

Hip-hop trio Grayskul is tight with the Def Jux and Rhymesayers crews. Mr. Lif, Aesop Rock, and Atmosphere are all pals and collaborators. Little surprise then that Grayskul's debut album, Deadlivers, combines the deep, murky sounds of underground heroes Cannibal Ox with RZA-like stabs of slasher-movie shrieks. It's dark, complicated material that's often punctuated by rappers Onry Ozzborn and JFK (both are also members of Seattle hip-hop collective Oldominion), who rhyme about B-movie fantasy landscapes with traces of spite and menace. But they're in on the tease, scowling for the cameras while working their active brains overtime. Deadlivers works best, however, as a peek into the minds of basement-dwelling oddballs who conjure up some scary sounds and ominous beats.
Sun., Feb. 12, 9 p.m.

Speaking of Highlights

More by Michael Gallucci


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