You are using an outdated browser. Upgrade your browser to improve your user experience.


The Roots



The moment the redeeming fax, sent from Philadelphia, walked in with that distinctive sound of an Aphex Twin remix and the opening line "t's good, we're coming off!" appeared in her field of vision, the Lokerse Feesten secretary screamed ROOOOTS BLOODY ROOTS so loudly that our pet parakeet's heart gave up on the egg so after. The good news, however, turned out to have nothing to do with Brazilian metal, as this was about the American hip-hop/neo-soul/funk sensation THE ROOTS. You know, the group that began its walk of fame in the 1990s, scored a few hits here ("You got me" in 1999, "The Seed" in 2003) and, with records like "Things fall apart" (1999), "Game theory" (2006) and "Undun" (2011), respectively, inscribed the highest certificate, the all-time gold medal and the Grammy in hip-hop history, which was received with the loudest cheers.

Those who, when they think of the stipulation "hip-hop," think of a scratching DJ and a rapper wearing a fisherman's hat and pants almost hanging down to his knuckles will, upon seeing The Roots, put their preconceptions into an Uber after a minute or two to be dropped off at home because this gang live, that's next level. For example, the group uses more instruments than the BRT Big Band in the 1960s and although Black Thought is one of the best rappers in the world, from The Roots you get just as much of a life lesson on the history of soul, jazz, funk and, yes it exists, jazz funk.

You also know The Roots, of course, as Jimmy Fallon's sometimes naughty backing band on his The Tonight Show. We once saw them announce a not so sweet lady from American politics with a snippet of Fishbone's "Lyin' ass bitch. Anyone who didn't take The Roots to heart back then has no idea how to make America great again. Conclusion, our line-up for Saturday, August 3 (Phoenix! Charlotte & Bolis! Vitalic! Compact!) announces itself as legendary rather than fantastic. Cool bloody cool.