Morodo & Okoumé Lions at NYC’s DROM
Morodo & Okoumé Lions performed for the first time in the United States on December 7th in the trendy NYC neighborhood of Alphabet City. Hosted by both Black Iron Burger at DROM, Morodo & Okoumé Lions put on an electrifying performance that could of only been captured if one were there. If you haven’t heard of Morodo before, you will definitely be hearing more of him soon! Arguably, Morodo is one of the more popular reggae artists from Spain, dubbing his own style 'rap-ragga' by combining the sounds of raggamuffin and rap. These two genres are not a bizarre blend, as hip hop historically borrowed the concepts of sampling and emceeing from reggae’s tradition of dubbing. What sets Morodo apart is his rough and rogue vocals that gives him that edge. Subjectively speaking, Morodo's vocal range sounds similar to the likes of Buju Banton, with lyrical alignment of reggae legend, Peter Tosh. However, Morodo is truly incomparable as he has carved his own lane in the reggae community by being truly himself.
Being their first experience playing in the states, Morodo and his Okoume Lions made sure to cater to their American fan base...
Being their first experience playing in the states, Morodo and his Okoumé Lions made sure to cater to their American fan base by playing the hit single, “Fumo Marihuana”. Even though we could not light up in the club, there was no need to get high, for the energy behind the band's performance of this song was enough to lift you. Morodo soley spoke in Spanish, which posed as a language barrier for myself, but not for the majority of the crowd, for they were able to recite every single lyric he spoke. Despite not being able to understand the totality of Morodo when he spoke to the crowd in between his songs, the energy was palpable. It truly felt as if we were all experiencing the same emotion, the same feeling at the same time, and I believe that is due to both Morodo & Okoumé Lions' musical talent. The best example of this feeling of collectivism was the closing song, “Rap n Party”; the song itself marries Morodo's love of rap to his reggae beat. This musical fusion then translated to the audience by being overpowering, creating somewhat a of mosh pit or general 'jumping around' found in many hip hop concerts.
This event was a long time coming for his fans, many of whom may not have had the chance to see him abroad and finally were able to see him the flesh and blood! It was beautiful to see how connected his fans were when Morodo would do the call and respond (popular in many of his reggae songs) and hear them recite the lyrics verbatim. This was a monumental event for Morodo & Okoumé Lions and I am so lucky to have had the privilege to be a part of that.