Concert Review: People Under the Stairs

People Under the Stairs played Porter's Pub at UCSD. Image courtesy of People Under the Stairs

By Philip Heilman

People Under The Stairs
Porter’s Pub
November 12, 2011

Dubbing themselves “the most popular un-popular hip hop band of all time,” People Under The Stairs gave the crowd that gathered at UCSD’s Porter’s Pub on November 12, and it was the concert experience any of their fans could have wished for.

PUTS, a hip hop group that has been together since 1997, consists of Thes One and Double K. Prior to their performance, the two of them sold shirts, albums and stickers at the merchandise table. They interacted with fans, discussing requests for the night, and talking about how they appreciate their fan base.

The show opened with Thes One projecting a game of Mario on a screen at the back of the stage to the turntable beats of Double K. Early on, the venue dealt with sound system issues, since the monitors were too quiet for the rap duo to hear themselves. The group took this in stride and Thes One assured the crowd that “we are going to turn this into a house party.” This received applause from the audience, who instantly knew that it was going to be a great show.

PUTS got the crowd hyped with the song “Trippin’ At The Disco !!!” They then played more classic tracks such as “Los Angeles Song”,  “Beer,” and “Yehaw Partystyles.” One of the requests from a crowd member was for them to play with the drum machine and turn tables. The crowd’s energy picked up just as the tempo of the beat, and the show was just getting started.

Thes One then began to freestyle to Double K’s beat box, leaving us all impressed, and transitioned perfectly into the two most memorable songs of the night. “San Francisco Knights” and “Acid Raindrops,” arguably their most popular songs, left no doubt as to why they are so highly esteemed after they were performed live. When the opening beat to “Acid Raindrops” began, everyone jumping up and down, and the remainder of the song maintained the crowd’s vibes. Debatably the best song of the night was “San Francisco Knights,” with its chorus changed to “San Diego Nights” lead to all those in attendance singing along.

PUTS closed the show with an encore, performing “The Hang Loose,” in which they invited all the girls in the audience on stage. What ensued was everyone dancing to the funky beat and smooth flow of Thes one and Double K. The duo then left the stage, returned to the merchandise table to talk with fans, and made it clear to those that were there that loyalty to fans is what the underground rap scene is all about.