All kinds of music fans made their way to the parking lot of 8th and Railroad for That Sounds Decent, a music festival hosted by local rap group Soulcrate, Saturday night in Sioux Falls.
Even Mayor Mike Huether is a Soulcrate fan – he declared Aug. 26 to be Soulcrate Day in honor of Soulcrate’s 15th anniversary as a group and the fourth anniversary of their That Sounds Decent festival.
The event was free, and the members of Soulcrate have made sure of that each year they’ve hosted the event. They stay afloat through beer and merchandise sales as well as help from local sponsors like Fernson Brewing Company and The Breaks Coffee Roasting Co.
There were also a handful of food trucks at the event. I was drawn to one called Hunny & Bunny, which sold Greek and Mediterranean cuisine. I ordered a chicken shawarma with a side of fries, and it hit the spot. The shawarma was freshly cooked with romaine lettuce and tomatoes on top and a drizzle of tzatziki. The pita was thick and delicious and the chicken was full of garlic flavor and a hint of spice. The fries came with a dipping cup of tzatziki, which was a nice palate cleanser between big bites of the shawarma. It was amazing, and fueled a night of rocking out and throwing elbows to get to the front of the crowd.
The night started off with a performance by Elsa Rae, which I unfortunately missed. I have, however, seen her perform solo before on the White Wall Sessions, and as the vocalist for Gordo Jibang. She has an unbelievable voice. It’s as smooth as honey, very smoky and sultry. I’ll have to catch a performance of hers again sometime.
Next up was Tuff Roots, a reggae/ska band. I sadly outgrew my ska phase in middle school, but some of my friends and most everyone in the crowd enjoyed the upbeat nature of their music. They had a fun stage presence.
Denham followed with an impressive set. He performed unique rap music with a backing band and two very young backup dancers. I was more impressed by their moves and spirit than anything. Denham’s passion was evident; he had a smile on his face through most of his set, and even asked for some audience participation by asking if there were any bad dancers in the crowd. He invited up a fan onto the stage, and they had a good time.
Between sets, a DJ named Last Word spun some crowd favorites. It kept the good vibes up.
Soulcrate soon took the stage, and performed classics like “Stoic,” “Sleep Awake” and “Zoomed Out.” Brothers Dan and Wes Eisenhauer rapped while Corey Gerlach spun tracks and drummer Isaac Show of Later Babes kept the beat. These guys have their act down after 15 years of playing. It seemed that most people in the crowd knew the words, and I even found myself singing along to “All Day” when everyone shouts “Soulcrate, sucka!”
Minneapolis rapper PROF ended the night with a very energetic set. I admit I hadn’t listened to his music before this concert, but the more I listened, the more I figured out that he’s pretty good at what he does. “Permission” is one of my new favorite tracks of his. In “Mob,” PROF commanded the crowd to yell “YA!” with a lift of his sweat rag, which I found fun, but the lyrics turned me off because they were a tad misogynistic. Yet, I couldn’t help laughing along at the lyrics to his track “I Had Sex In The 90’s.” His hype man deserves some credit, too, for producing many of the tracks and dancing along with PROF for much of the set.
That Sounds Decent was just one more great night spent in my hometown. I felt my spirits being lifted as I ate delicious local food, screamed along to the music with my friends and moved with the crowd. Thank you, Sioux Falls.