Stereo MC's - Manchester MDH - 4.4.01

And they say British Hip Hop's dead man. How can it be when we have the return of the Stereo MC's? It seems as if everything is falling into place for British urban music. Uk garage is the force, we've got Mark B & Blade throwing the right shapes and now Rob Birch et all are back on the scene. We only really need top Manchester hip hoppers Kaleef to reform and we'll have it all.

Manchester is the chosen place for the comeback and its seems as if the revolution will be televised. All is good and as the camera's swirl round it appears there is more a musical revolution than a cultural one. Despite the fact that they've been in hibernation the guys are in something of a time warp. Forget the sampling culture bastardized by countless Puff Daddy clones. The MC's are back with a real live band and a pimp on the keys. And then there is Caff Coffey and her girls - kind of a Destiny's Child from the council estate of urban Britain.

As they hit the stage to the old classic "Fade Away" its clear that all is good. Whatever the reasons for their absence, and I hesitate to speculate as it could be anything from drug abuse to just plain writers block, it seems that they can put on a show with the best of them. Birch does that Albert Steptoe taking off Big Bird style dance and the souls sisters strut there stuff like no other. True, the likes of "Connected" and "Step It Up" stand head and shoulders above the new material but give them time and you'll get the vibe.

Ending on "Lost In Music" an oldie even by there standards and its all over too quickly. I may be a little biased as I've been a fan since the old days but to me they could easily have played all night. It truly was that mad. Lets just hope they don't go into exile again.

Alex McCann