‘Lazima Udie’ is playing and a moshpit battle between Lawrence Muchemi and Yvonne Ndubi is at its peak.
Today is Friday and the week is ending. The last one had a strangeness to it. Things seemed to have a pale colour to them and I didn’t know how to feel about life in general. Cold weather prevailed throughout but even when the sun conspired to break this monotony there was simply not enough motivation to have a positive outlook.
How does one step outside such crippling apathy? I had half the mind to wrap a few belongings in a large headscarf and tie that bundle to the end of that stick that I found in my grandmother’s backyard. I remember being very proud of that stick. I would go away for good and get a new name. Under the cover of dark grey clouds, I would make my living cutting sugar cane. If I don’t from a snake bite, pneumonia will steal upon me one night as I sleep in my mud-thatched hut and I will die with no more belongings than a radio and my macheté!
Yes, disappearing is an enticing notion but I doubt it will ever offer complete satisfaction to the emptiness of urban life. That solution must be found amidst its streets where an underground culture is always bubbling. At the tail end of Moi Avenue, Club Seven’s Lounge is hosting Dj Edygrim’s weekly show which also doubles up as metalcore band Irony Destroyed’s meet and greets session.
The streets are noiseless and clean. You can almost feel the world as it spins.
I arrive, surprised to find the band already set up at their merchandise table just at the mouth of the entrance, straddling the Dj’s booth to the front. Skylar is seated at one end of the table. At times I look at her and wonder if she ages at all. She wears the same balanced smile and her eyes are always clear. Seated next to her is Lenny Kiano the band’s guitarist whose green Celtic tattoo peeks boldly from under the sleeve of his cradle of filth t-shirt, a clothing item I secretly covet. I also see Dennis and Lawrence. The customary nod and knowing glances are made and capped off with energetic handshakes. Carrington Kabatha, joins them later, walking in with Martin Kanja.
All this time Slammy is filming and taking photos. Sometimes I wonder what goes on in his head as he clicks away. He must be worried about things like shutter speed or the balance of light in the room. How long will it take to edit those photos? Powerslide and skating must be on his mind a lot too.
Seeing as I’m early I may have to order a drink as I wait for more company but at least there is football on the display to avert my gaze. Slowly more people stream in. Willy Ojiro of powerslide, Antonio with his hair tied up in a ponytail. Mordecai Ogayo also walks in wearing a Pink Floyd t-shirt and his signature brown leather shoes. Later we are seated around the same table with Mahia Mutua of Last Year’s Tragedy and Eric the Juventus fan. The company fluctuates from between 3-6 members at any one time. Mahia offers fire to the conversation, recalling a pool match between LYT and ParkingLotGrass where it ended as with the latter winning. I am tempted to revisit the topic of Murfy’s fLaw being able to outdrink any band in a contest.
On the decks, Dj Edygrim starts out with a steady mix that doesn’t overstate the current mood. Later on in the night, when bodies are rolling away in the moshpit, it is intense, conducting heads back and forth and every which way. Those with dreadlocks and braids are perhaps my greatest envy. They make their moshing graceful. They are a flock of black swans beginning to advance from the surface of the water, wings outstretched. And just like this wildly swinging hair, they make rhythmic flapping sounds. To windmill must be every metalhead’s dream.
This is tonight’s scene. Sprawled across the merch table are copies of the album ” Strife to Legacy”, stickers of various sizes, booklets with lyrics placed over backgrounds that bear pristine shots of the band. There is something for everyone. ‘Lazima Udie’ is playing and a mosh pit battle between Lawrence Muchemi and Yvonne Ndubi is at its peak.
Kobimbo Daniel Otieno
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