Mix Master Mike 311.
(photo credit: Courtesy)
Mix Master Mike’s gig had everything going for it: A high-profile master hip hop
turntablist on a Friday night in Tel Aviv with an “Israel get ready tonight”
tweet on his twitter feed, a good crowd, fitting venue and a perfectly placed
camera to show off the Beastie Boys DJ’s formidable skills on the wheels of
steel. And yet somehow, the gig didn’t quite hit the spot.
was of a good mixed age, with far more males than females, dressed in casual,
down-to-earth clothes, and not too drunk or rowdy. However this may have had
something to do with the fact that the drinks were horribly overpriced, and some
overzealous smoke-machine operation made moving around the packed club fairly
The support acts, made up of Israeli DJs Barak Wiess, Mesh,
Ori Shochat, Alarm and Ortega, played for three hours, running over 40 minutes
past Mix Master Mike’s scheduled start-time. That aside, they put on a decent
show, slowly but surely luring the club too its feet to welcome the main
The hip hop master made his way up to the decks just after 2 a.m. in
a Giants Tshirt, opening with The Prodigy classic, “Breathe.” Though the bass
was far too strong, it was a good choice for the Israeli crowd, who yelled and
whistled their appreciation.
And yet somehow from that track on, the
40-year-old four-time DMC champion made noble efforts but largely failed to keep
the crowd moving, zipping through samples from ACDC’s “Highway to Hell” to The
Chemical Brother’s “Galvanize”, waiting till after the seventh track to drop The
Beastie Boy’s 1998 hit “Intergalactic”. To be fair, between some oddly-placed
dub and hard trance stints, the crowd did get going to some impressive
turntabling, and mixes of funk hit “For the Love of Money”, 2pac’s “California
Love”, Deep Purple’s “Smoke on the Water” and Mix Master Mike favorite, Rage
Against the Machine’s “Killing in the Name.”
In short, while no one was
standing around bored, and the hardcore hip hop fans got a chance to see a major
artist up close, the gig failed to do justice to Mix Master Mike’s impressive DJ
history, and instead of being a night to remember, ended up as a fun night out
at a Tel Aviv club.