Live: Flatbush Zombies And Cerebral Ballzy Bring Brooklyn To The Lower East Side


Cerebral Ballzy w/Flatbush Zombies, The Gospels, Jasmine Solano
The Space
Friday, June 22

Better than: Getting caught in the rain.

On a humid Friday at a new, still-raw, skate-ramp-slash-stage-equipped Lower East Side space (called, er, The Space), the answer to the timeless question “Is Brooklyn in the house?” was answered by Kings County’s own Flatbush Zombies and Cerebral Ballz, who blew away a sweaty crowd of skaters, punks and hip-hop heads.

Up-and-coming collective The Gospels were the first band to play; even though the band was mostly unknown collective, the crowd was into it, shouting and moshing like Bad Brains had just hopped on stage. In between sets, the lovely Jasmine Solano spun records and kept the crowd from melting into puddles topped by tank tops, snap backs and cutoffs. (The Space’s backyard helped, too.)

Flatbush Zombies had about twenty other kids on stage with them, so it was hard to pick out Meech and Juice at first; luckily Juice had the killer Kobe Bryant jersey, while Meech sported a Patrick Ewing joint. They jumped into “Hangover” and “Face Off” with no unnecessary talk, then pulled A$AP Ant and Remy Banks on to the stage to perform “3Flips6.” By this point the mosh pit got kind of crazy, with one dude trying to stage dive. (A lone patron held him up for a few seconds before dropping him to the moist, dirty floor. It looked even funnier in person.) After “The Fun Song” the Zombies performed their most popular song “Thug Waffles,” and after two more tracks they hopped off stage, taking their twenty or so hypemen with them.

Another backyard break ensued before the headliners, Cerebral Ballzy, came out to do their thug thizzle. The energy was frantic and the moshing got really intense; a few band members were actually able to pull of successful attempts at stage diving. The problem is I can rarely understand a word of hardcore/punk usually, so I was a bit lost, although lead singer/screamer Honor Titus gave us a brief description prior to every song—”this song is about beer,” “this song is about drugs,” “this song is about a pizza.” Their set was pandemonium teetering on real violence at every turn, yet there was no posturing or threat of real beef. Spread love—it’s the Brooklyn way!

Critical bias: Flatbush Zombies are the truth.

Overheard “That’s it. I’m getting a gold tooth. Don’t ‘yeah, yeah’ me. I’m really gonna do it.”

Random notebook dump: I think the younger generation of fans gets much liver at shows than my too-cool-for-school generation.

Set lists:
Flatbush Zombies
Face Off
The Fun Song
Thug Waffles
Laker Paper

Cerebral Ballzy
Sk8 All Day
Swallow The Suds
Puke Song
Return Of The Slice
Drug Myself Dumb
Cutting Class
Junkie For Her
Causing Havoc
Insufficient Dare
Don’t Look My Way
Don’t Tell Me What To Do
All I Ever Wanted