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UD Low Down: South To The Stars @ Colours, Hoxton

Armed with a pen and camera, Tumi Mary Ogundamisi & Dre Lenses report from the mosh pit at east London venue Colours, where Saiming and Zuko Rosemeid kicked off their South To The Stars tour with zest…

Between sweaty bodies and bopping heads, it was hard not to feel the infectious energy of Saiming and Zukos first leg of their South to the Stars tour at Colours, Hoxton.

Saiming, also known as ‘Rhythm’s Right-Hand Man‘, is famous for his viral hits ‘Woof Meow‘, ‘Vibe Dispersion‘ and ‘Night Tube.’ A talented rapper from South London (and one of the 10 exceptional artists on UD’s 2023 Incubator Programme), Saiming continues to elevate within London’s creative scene alongside his fellow collaborators.

Zuko Rosemeid, better known as Zuko, the Dragon from the South, is another gifted rapper with a knack for freestyles, lyricism, and all-around creative initiative. A current participant of UD’s Incubator Programme, which supports artists’ development, there’s a shared drive and passion driving things forward.

You might have caught the two together on Balamii, performing at the Roundhouse, or across London, frequently and wholeheartedly. Together, they prove to be a force to be reckoned with.

The night began with sets from Indijya, followed by Tebitv and DJXHNWAV, who went b2b, bringing up the energy in the room and getting everyone dancing before the main acts even hit the stage. One of the things I loved most about this show was the sense of community—between all the artists involved, the team of photographers and videographers, and the crowd itself. It all felt like a unit. The DJs took us on a journey across genres. To my right, I watched hips shake, and to my left, I saw classic moves that made me feel like I was on Soul Train.

Rapper Tay Jordan continued this energy, rapping over 90s-sounding tracks, his curls bouncing, drawing the crowd closer as he opened the show with the first performance. We got a surprise set by J2, a rapper who works closely with Saiming and Zuko and who is also on UD’s incubator Programme. Armed with cadence and confidence, he effortlessly graced the stage.

Before the show began, our performers shared a message of hope and solidarity, signaling their support for those suffering in Palestine and explaining that proceeds from their CD sales would be donated to support the cause. The room filled with chants of liberation and support, creating a shared identity and passion for freedom.

Zuko hit the stage running with undeniably electric energy. One thing that stands out about this rapper is his passion, evident on his face as he delivers fast-paced rap quickly and effortlessly. The crowd responded to this passion, jumping, dancing, and rapping along, creating an infectious energy. I noticed the dedication of both rappers’ fan bases, with a crowd quickly forming at the front, rapping along to every word. I spoke to a few attendees, and it was beautiful to gain insight into what drew different people to the tour. From old school friends to former collaborators to a particularly keen fan who came all the way from Orlando to support them!

“Thank you…for one of the best nights I’ll remember forever,” said one fan.

Even before performing songs from the South to the Stars EP, both artists treated us to music from across their careers, along with special supporting guests. We were spoiled with performances from collaborating artists such as Cmillano, Nori, and Floeticc. While they were amazing, one of the highlights was seeing everyone come together on stage at the end, shutting the whole place down. Shouts and chants of ‘Zukooooo’ and ‘Sai-Minggggggg’ came from the audience as we showed our support and appreciation for a wonderful night full of music and energy.

The night ended on a crowd favorite, ‘Vibe Dispersion’ as Saiming stepped into the crowd and mosh pits started to form. At first, I ran to escape the insane energy, but even I couldn’t resist jumping as the whole room lit up, rapping along in unison and demanding one more song. Heeding our insistence, Saiming and Zuko came back to perform ‘Night Tube’, ending the night on a high. If this is only the first night of the South to the Stars tour, I can only imagine the heights they will go from here with more experience, new cities, and more time. 

Together, Saiming and Zuko, and their collaborators created an unforgettable night that showcased the strength and vibrancy of the UK underground rap scene. More, please.

Follow Saiming & Zuko for the latest tour dates and new music.

Words: Tumi Mary Ogundamisi

Photography: Dre Lenses

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