Saturday Night: Sneaker Pimps, featuring the Cool Kids and the Clipse, at the Moore Building

Categories: Concert Review
Pusha T of the Clipse playing to the crowd at Sneaker Pimps in Miami on Saturday.
Click here to view the full slideshow from this event.

Sneaker Pimps
Live Performances by the Cool Kids and Clipse
Saturday, May 30, 2009
The Moore Building, Miami

Better than: A backpack full of factory-fresh, limited edition kicks.

Outside the Moore Building, footwear fetishists of all kinds tip-toed past rain- and flyer-flooded gutters, queuing up at the corner of NE 2nd Ave. and 40th Street for the Miami edition of Sneaker Pimps. There were Lil Wayne wannabes, Asian hip-hop heads, and hardcore skate dudes à la Suicidal Tendencies. Somewhat surprisingly though, the waiting all-ages crowd also included a ton of female fan-types: Lil Mamas and Kid Sisters and a clutch of M.I.A. look-alikes.

Inside, the scene was a full-on youth marketing bumrush. The whole shoe exhibition thing (rare, vintage, and artist-modified Converse, Nike, PF Flyers, and Adidas behind Cuidado yellow tape) played like mere background. Instead, kids from five to 50 years old kept busy at the Xbox 360 gaming station or trawling the Sneaker Pimps table for branded New Era caps, tees, and bejeweled grills.

Shorties snatched free skull stickers, Onitsuka Tiger toy keychains, and other sneaker-related swank from the Tokidoki corner. And upstairs, the independent merch shop--featuring Da Bottom Clothing, Superkix, Female Sneaker Fiend, etc.--was mobbed thicker than the black market.

At 10:12 p.m., after an extended warm-up set by Miami's own DJ Keen One, opening act the Cool Kids took the stage, flanked by a pair of flatscreens broadcasting a Verizon-sponsored text stream of inane shit like "Luke knows kicks! LOL!" and "Hi!" Needless to say, it took a few songs for the Chicago-slash-Detroit duo to finally draw peeps from their shopping. But once the crowd found the front of the stage, MCs Mikey Rocks and Chuck Inglish tag-teamed the room with a 45-minute set of their retro-style rap faves, including "Gold Links" and "Popcorn." Before they left, sing-alongs started, hand-signs were tossed, and spliffs got sparked. 

Then picking up a half-hour before midnight, Virginian heavyweights and headliners the Clipse came full-force with the true street package. As always, brothers (the genetic kind) Malice and Pusha T brought vicious flow, fast brutal beats, and thugged-out gangsta tales to the fore. Manically stalking the stage, they criss-crossed left to right and back between verses, plugging the air with mimicked glock-blasts and hyping the crowd with overtures to the 305. Their set sampled widely from 2002's Lord Willin' and 2006's Hell Hath No Fury while giving a few glimpses of their long-brewing, upcoming release Till the Casket Drops. Added to that, there was a walk-on appearance from Philly-based rapper and Re-Up Gang member Ab-Liva and the parting words: "It's curfew!"

Critic's Notebook

Personal Bias: Vans authentics and street-shredded Converse.

Random Detail: Seconds after changing his shoes, some wasted teen took a wide-stance curbside, poked his pecker past the fly, and dribbled urine all over his brand-new, white Nikes. 

By the Way: Piss on your kicks? Fat Joe's got the solution.

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