HYPE: Vol. 2 (11/9) New venue, new voices.

On November 9th, xBk––the exciting new live-music venue in Dogtown, DSM––hosted the second installment of their HYPE concert series.

The concert featured touring artists Frank Knight, R.Q.Tek and DJ J-Ronin (all of whom hail from the venue’s namesake [B]roo[k]lyn, NY). Knight and Tek shared the stage for each other’s sets, and got the whole crowd (albeit an intimate one) pumped and on their feet.

[from left] R.Q.Tek and Frank Knight at HYPE: Vol.2 (11/9)

After the NYC boys concluded, several local acts took to the stage. Up first was Colo Chanel, a DSM rising star, who performed her biggest singles, including “Bend it Ova” and “Selfish.” Chanel is no stranger to the area, with ties to Drake University and its theatre department.

Colo Chanel at HYPE: Vol.2 (11/9)

After Colo Chanel, there was a pause in music, as DMI Breakers (a local hip-hop break dancing troupe) busted down not on stage, but rather in the crowd. Their skills and athleticism were matched only by their passion and energy.

DMI Breakers at HYPE: Vol.2 (11/9)

Once the dancing wrapped up, we got back into the music. Equinox[X], AKA King Solstice, hit the stage. [From this point forward, all the artists on stage were ones I’d either only heard about, or never heard of.] Equinox[X] wound up being one of the most fun performances of the night. From the call and response, to the beat drops, to the clever lyrics, Equinox[X] kept the crowd engaged and on their feet for the entire performance.

Equinox[X] at HYPE: Vol.2 (11/9)

Finally, after Equinox[X] dipped, Smoke hit the stage. Smoke was the surprise hit of the night. His technical abilities and unique cadences really made him stand out against the rest of the lineup. Talented and driven, Smoke is new to the game, but doesn’t seem to be leaving any time soon.

[EDIT of] Smoke at HYPE: Vol.2 (11/9)

Overall, xBk has done an incredible thing with HYPE––giving local artists not only a platform to perform, but also the opportunity to do so with touring, established artists.

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