The top hip hop shows at the Jazz Fest

The Bell stage will be the site of a lot of quality rap in the weeks to come. See details about who’s playing there, and about more Jazz Fest shows & a few off-fest parties.

shineI have the week off the day job and it feels so good I’ve entirely lost track of what day it is, but if you’ll permit me a late pass, I’ll get you set up for Jazz Fest and more this week, cool?


Friday: The ladies of Heartstreets make their festival debut at 10 p.m. on the Bell stage. I haven’t caught them in a minute and tonight, they bring their blend of rap and soul to life with a live band. And it’s free! Clark & de Montigny, 10 p.m., free

Off-fest, Mad Stacks hits le Belmont with Vilify, Construct, Son Raw, Ruined Sundays, and of course, a shit-ton of velour bass. 4483 St-Laurent, 10 p.m., free before midnight/$5

Meanwhile, Lexis and Guilty bring their musical sanctuary to Bleury Bar à Vinyle. 2109 Bleury, 10 p.m.

And back at the Jazz Fest, the Urban Science band — you know them from le Cypher — take over the Savoy, midnight from Friday night through Sunday, with three special tributes. Tonight, explore the sounds of A Tribe Called Quest. Saturday pays respect to the sounds of French legends IAM, and Sunday, Kanye gets the treatment. I’d venture to say all three nights will be dope as hell. 59 Metropolis, 11:55 p.m., free

Saturday: The Bell stage welcomes Quebec hip hop king Dramatik, formerly of Muzion. Clark & de Montigny, 10 p.m., free

And at Maison Sociale, Illa J rolls through for a guest DJ set. 5386 St-Laurent, 8 p.m., free

Sunday: The big show on the Bell stage tonight is none other than returning champion Jai Nitai Lotus, with new music, his live band, a fresh show and special guests. Those who witnessed Nitai’s first gig there in 2013 will tell you not to miss this. Clark & de Montigny, 10 p.m., free

Of course, this may cause a logistical snafu as Nomadic Massive bring it from 9 p.m. on the Club Casino de Montréal stage the same night. You can catch a bit of this and hightail it to JNL for 10 p.m., and the good news is, the Nomads do it again Monday, same time, same place. Bleury & Ste-Catherine W., 9 p.m., free

Monday: Badu at Salle Wilfrid Pelletier, and if you haven’t got tix, don’t look at me! 175 Ste-Catherine W., 7:30 p.m., $93.50 to $118.50 

Tuesday: The increasingly prolific Illa J, who’s putting the final touches on a new album recorded here in Montreal and dropping in September, does it up big time with a live band at the Bell Stage. All of these Bell stage shows will be special, but this one’ll probably tip the scale to “magic.” Clark & de Montigny, 10 p.m., free

Thursday: Montreal dancehall toast-master Face-T brings the riddims to the Bell stage. Clark & de Montigny, 8 p.m., free


Electro-weirdos would do well to check out this new fest, AIM. Pack your bags, pitch your tent, and shake your ass to the likes of Tiga, the XX, Four Tet live and much more this weekend, Friday through Sunday. (Read Cult MTL‘s interview with deep house DJ Kerri Chandler, who’s playing AIM, here.)

If you haven’t got your tix yet, TO jazz bastards BadBadNotGood bring their collab with Ghostface Killah, Sour Soul, to the Metropolis on Saturday, July 4, with opener and upcoming rap star Mick Jenkins opening. This one will bounce. ■

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