RBMA NYC: Trouble & Bass Crew Wins Culture Clash
New York City – As a part of Red Bull Music Academy’s NYC takeover this month, crowd of 2,500 fans filled Manhattan’s Roseland Ballroom this past May 9 to witness a once-in-a-lifetime musical battle between four very different DJ crews.
Young Guru & Just Blaze, Que Bajo?!, Federation Sound, and Trouble & Bass all brought their most exclusive dubplates, surprise guests, coldest disses, killer costumes and more as they clashed in a celebration of New York music that paid homage to Jamaican sound system culture.
Rounds 1 and 2 of the competition required the crews to stick to their own respective musical genres—with round 1 producing no winner. Crews were judged on song selection and presentation during the second round, and Brooklyn-based bass collective Trouble & Bass took the 2nd round title for its eclectic blend of styles, ranging from dubstep to electro house, and even a little bit of rock and punk.
Round 3 (aka “Sleeping With The Enemy”) forced crews to stray outside their comfort zones and play a pre-assigned competitor’s style of music. Highlights included Que Bajo?!’s take on Drake’s “Started From The Bottom” with hilariously reworked lyrics like “Started from the border now we here/Started from the border now my whole fuckin’ family here,” and Just Blaze and Young Guru’s dancehall set featuring rappers Jadakiss and Styles P. Trouble & Bass came out swinging, this time bringing out moombahton originator Dave Nada alongside vocalist Nina Sky for a rendition of their hits “Oye Mi Canto” and “Move Ya Body.”
Round 4 saw Just Blaze and Young Guru bringing out 2 Chainz, Raekwon, and Bun B, while Federation Sound celebrated New York dancehall with Spragga Benz, Mr. Easy, Red Fox and Ricky Blaze. But they were no match for Trouble & Bass’ knockout blow, which was dealt in the form of their guests Robin S performing an exclusive live rendition of her dance-music classic “Show Me Love,” and Cam’ron coming out with “I Really Mean It” and “Salute”—the former of which was ironically produced by Just Blaze and Young Guru.
So big congrats go out to Trouble & Bass and its DJs—Drop the Lime, Star Eyes, The Captain and A.C. Slater—well done!
Next up on the Red Bull Music Academy docket: Mister Saturday Night vs. Dope Jams at a secret venue on May 19th and disco-legend Giorgio Moroder’s first ever DJ set alongside T. Wiliams, Benjamin Damage, and François K for a Deep Space party at Brooklyn’s Output club on Monday, May 20.