Saturday Night Gospel: 140 bars and shelling

One quality that makes Gospel music stand out from any other genre is the ability of the genre to stay relevant through keeping the core sonic elements while seamlessly embracing the current tides of leading music genres such rap and grime.

But the elephant in the room has often been the accessibility and showcasing of Gospel music to the masses.

Whenever a Gospel-oriented act is faced with this proposition, the general feeling is whether an audience with a secular ear will connect and if this connection will fulfil evangelical.

As said in the book of Psalms, let everything that has breath praise the Lord, but to what extreme do we take it to the world?

Enter the stage UK Gospel rap supremo Feed‘Em, as he stepped to the mark and brought a different alleluia to the Saturday night gig scene in East London.

As part of a handpicked line up of performers spanning across different genres of urban music for the ‘Un:Hurd X LNIP present UN:TITLED’ open mic night, Feed’Em brought the tenacity to keep the crowd amped and instantly connecting with his stage persona.

Without hesitation, Feed’Em opened his set with his high-octane track ‘Outro’, a trademark track loaded with lyrics of making a conscious decision to follow a righteous path or in his words ‘destination to the maker.’ In this musical space, Feed‘Em showcases his seamless ability to make an up-tempo Grime-infused track that has the crossover appeal of reaching the masses while without watering down the message.

Photography by Fingerprint Fotos/Editor Ikegenic

Putting the pedal to the metal, he takes things up a notch by launching into the crowd favourite ‘Keep That.’ Recognized as a signature track over a renowned grime instrumental, this performance was certainly one where Feed‘Em turned doubters to believers. When ushering in the 8-bar chorus, many (including myself) catch ourselves responding ‘Keep That’ as he powers through and lifts the crowd. To the untrained ear, it may appear as fun and games, but the consistency remains as the message pierces through the chorus as a rebuttal to darkness.

The set is crowned off with an old-school garage/grime medley where Feed‘Em juggles a mix of classic instrumentals and taps into freestyle mode. Showing love for his craft, nostalgic flows and rhyme schemes are delivered with a modern lyrical twist as the crowd are left spellbound by unique ability to switch and hit without missing a step. A Gospel tinged performance in front of a largely secular crowd. Looking across the room, this was in many ways mission accomplished!

If you were to ask the man himself, this is just the beginning as Feed‘Em has his eye set on gracing a series of platforms, both nationally and internationally, to catapult his profile and fulfil a ministry that is pretty much the air he breathes. With summer on the horizon and his stock rising, the sky presents no limit as he sights on things much greater and of a divine calling. After all, God’s time will prevail.

Nathan Amoatin

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