Noise Pop Live Review: Peanut Butter Wolf


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Chris Manak — better known as Peanut Butter Wolf and the founder of Stones Throw Records — is a live DJ known for his eclectic mix of rap, soul, hip-hop, and funk, all wrapped in a lively and fun package. Sadly, all that — the light fun, and visual mash-ups for which he's known —was nowhere to be found during last night’s Noise Pop show at Public Works SF.

Billed as a very exclusive and unique all 45’s show, expectations and spirits were high around the crowded floor of the small venue. The crowd was a healthy mix of hipsters and hip-hop fanatics whose attention spans were tested by the 3 hour set by openers Guillermo (Sweater Funk) and Hakobo (fresco). While continually wondering where the headliners were was frustrating to say the least, it became quite clear that both Guillermo and Hakobo knew how to spin.

Undoubtedly the most enjoyable part of the show, the local DJ’s kept the crowd alive and dancing with their perfect blend of disco, electronic, and funk. If nothing else, this show will ensure that these DJ’s are the talk of the town for months to come. It was only around two and a half hours into their complementary flow that people began to get restless, as their dreams of both seeing the show and making the last BART train were dashed.

Strolling onto the stage around 12:30 a.m., both Peanut Butter Wolf and DâM-FunK waved to the crowd while making the obligatory comments about how much they love San Francisco. Without as much as a true plan for an analog battle (as DâM-FunK repeatedly exclaimed, “This is wax! With wax you never know what is going to happen!”), both DJ’s simultaneously spun pressed singles, yet never truly came in sync with one another.

There was nothing particularly bad about the combined set of DâM-FunK and main draw Peanut Butter Wolf, but the mediocrity of the evening was disappointing enough. These are two of the biggest names in hip-hop DJing, but there was no spark or passion in the set leaving us to wonder why after so many anticipated hours of waiting they decided to show up at all.