Clipping at the Starline Social Club for Noise Pop 2017, by Jon Bauer

Clipping. at the Starline Social Club (photo: Jon Bauer)

Note: This review is for the Clipping. show February 25 - all photos are from their show at the Starline Social Club in Oakland February 24.

Clipping., the noise-rap project fronted by Daveed Diggs, played a pair of sold-out shows for Noise Pop on each side of the Bay this past weekend

For Saturday night's show, Oakland's Jay Stone kicked off the night donning a red velvet bathrobe and performing a couple of mellow tunes, including the challenging "Lake Merritt" off his 2014 collaboration with Monster Rally, Foreign Pedestrians. The crowd was mostly unfamiliar with Stone, but they quickly warmed up to him with his charisma, t-shirt giveaways, and excellent new material advising the crowd not to trust flying monkeys.

On the surface, Baseck's harsh electronica seems like a good fit to open for clipping., but without a vocalist, it just ends up feeling....harsh. Granted, solo sampler performers generally aren't my thing and Baseck didn't have a mic for some reason, but the crowd just never seemed to connect to his set.

They were clearly primed for clipping. and Hamilton star Diggs. Diggs is a handsome and charismatic dude who makes the noisy beats of producers William Hutson and Jonathan Snipes more interesting - letting the listener know that rhythm is there when it wouldn't be readily apparent in an instrumental. On the flip side, the beats probably make Diggs' technical delivery more compelling as well - it's a great combo. The crowd knew all the appropriate callbacks and hung on every word - and the sheer number of words Diggs can fit into a few bars is astounding. Diggs is a star even without the insane hype of a hit musical, so don't expect to see clipping. in a venue as small as Brick and Mortar and Starline the next time they come to town.