Review: Soundset 2013 with Snoop Dogg and Atmosphere
- Canterbury Park
- Shakopee, MN.
- May 26, 2013
Memorial Day weekend at Canterbury Park in Shakopee, MN has grown to be a favorite among hip-hop fans with the Soundset Festival. The festival, which is put on by Rhymsayers Entertainment (owned by Minneapolis favorite Atmosphere) has classically highlighted the best in indie rap. In it’s sixth year, the festival took a decidedly mainstream approach by drawing in the biggest names in the game and the largest crowd to date.
There were three questions leading into this years’ Soundset Festival. Will Calvin Broadus arrive as Snoop Dogg or Snoop Lion? Why is Atmosphere being billed as the headliner? How will mainstream acts benefit/transform the historically indie hip-hop festival?
Fans were delivered a huge surprise with the announcement of Snoop Dogg, along with veterans Busta Rhymes and Tech N9ne, as well as relative newbie, Mac Miller. Furthering the draw was the inclusion of MTV’s Sway Calloway on MC duties for the day. Indie favorite Atmosphere, Aesop Rock, P.O.S. (of Doomtree), Juicy J and Brother Ali were also to grace the mainstage. The indie’s stepped up when Busta Rhymes was a no-show, as Minneapolis’ Prof took the opportunity to fill the void which led to big props from Callaway.
Despite a great line-up not all bode well for the festival. Impending down pours pushed off a large percentage of the crowd until later in the day but the rain only lightly affected the festival. ATM’s were down for several hours causing long lines through the day. On top of it all, the communication and direction among staff was incredibly, and I say this lightly, disorganized and disheartening. Despite it all, the festival did land Snoop Dogg (or would it be Snoop Lion?) and unlike Busta, Snoop did show.
“There’s not another MC alive today that has been on top of the game longer than Snopp Dogg!” ~ Sway Calloway.
The festival offered activities and hip-hop of all flavors. Two side tents offered some of the best in indie with Step Brothers, Kid Koala and The Chalice. A skateboard showdown, custom car show and live painting wall offered concert goers an alternative from the huge crowds on the main stage. The main stage was divided into EAST and WEST stages which worked wonderfully rotating in acts every 30-45 minutes throughout the day. The stage brought the big crowd pleasers including P.O.S., Tech N9ne and Mac Miller. Miller started the set with some of his earliest rhymes but ran up against the clock performing favorites “Loud” and “Lucky Ass B****h.” Atmosphere (joined by Plain Ole Bill) pumped the crowd up as devoted fans sang along to nearly every track. However, as Atmosphere performed on the EAST stage, the West Stage prepped for the big headliner.
A sign on the West Stage read, “On stage now: SNOOP DOGG / Up next: Nobody can follow Snoop ever!” This statement, or perhaps apology, said it all. In what felt like a sacrilegious marketing ploy leading into the festival, Snoop was billed second to Atmosphere. Atmosphere’s place in independent hip-hop is well deserved, but let’s be honest with ourselves…billing them over the Doggfather? That’s like billing Snoop over Prince or pretending the Vikings are superior to the Green Bay Packers. It’s just statistically true.
The biggest question of the day was whether Snoop would arrive as the DOGG or the LION? Callaway introduced the “national treasure” and “dopest MC in the game today” as Snoop Dogg. Kicking off the show with the Snoop Lion track, “Here Comes The King,” the show was a nonstop exercise in all things Snoop Dogg; showcasing his biggest hits, guest appearances and even an abbreviated cover of House of Pain’s “Jump Around.” Backed by a crew including Tha Dogg Pound (Daz Dillinger and Kurupt), Suga Free, three slinky dancers and a mascot (with a blunt and cash in hand), Snoop proved why he is the still the king of the hip-hop world. Closing the set with “Young, Wild and Free”, Snoop spoke of Bob Marley and referred to himself as Snoop Lion. Perhaps his Rastafarian transformation is more of a state of mind, but to the happy audience, whether he’s the dogg or the lion, in concert, he’s one and the same.
- California Love
- Still D.R.E.
- Here Comes The King
- Tha Shiznit
- All I Do Is Win
- The Next Episode
- Nuthin But A G Thang
- Bitch Please
- California Gurls
- Let’s Get High (with Kurupt)
- We Can Freak It (with Kurupt)
- I Wanna Fuck You (Akon)
- That’s That Shit
- I’d Rather Give You My Bitch (with Suga Free)
- Why U Bullshittin’ (with Suga Free)
- 2 of Amerikaz Most Wanted
- I Wanna Rock
- Gin and Juice
- Jump Around (House of Pain cover)
- Drop It Like It’s Hot
- Who Am I (What’s My Name?)
- Young, Wild and Free