What’s a typical code of conduct for a rapper these days? For some rappers it might be to assert their masculinity* in anyway possible, through rapping prowess or bravado; for others it might be honing on addressing flavour-of-the- month social issues for credibility as a “conscious rapper”.
Sydney rapping duo Coda Conduct (Erica Mallett and Sally Coleman) offer a fresh take on the hip hop code of conduct in more ways than one. Their songs offer a new approach to rap with a light-hearted touch and no aversion to the occasional puns and wordplay.
Puns + Rap + Chicks + Political Commentary = Brilliance.
As well as gigging between Canberra and Sydney in the past year enough to be Murrays VIP members, they have helped form the Capslock Collective, a hip-hop collective focused on putting the Canberra scene (yes, it does exist) on the map. As rappers, their main strength is their versatility, readily switching styles to fit the tone of their subject matter.
Their song Rainy Day plays like a response to Ellesquire’s On the Prowl, and channels a similar tongue-in-cheek wit. In other songs they offer a more straight- ahead political commentary, like Matter More – a response to some questionable environmental practices – with a suitably organic instrumental and video.
At times they also venture into territory you would not expect to work in a rap context, with songs about mangoes and ghosts making an appearance in their repertoire. All the same, whatever they rap about is handled with a characteristic wit and relatable humour, backed up by a solid flow.
The duo is yet to release an EP or album, so trawling their Soundcloud or Youtube only shows part of the picture. The best way to listen to them at this stage is via direct feed to your eardrums at one of their concerts, which, if you’re a Sydneysider, you can do next week at UTS’ Winterfest, when they support Violent Soho and SAFIA. This duo is definitely worth checking out first hand. Why? ‘Cos I said so.
*I’d call it Alpha dominance or attitude and don’t necessarily think gender plays a role. From Queen Latifa, MC Lyte, Da Brat through to Fergie, Niki Minaj, Lisa ‘left-eye’ Lopez and Missy Elliot girls have played a massive role in the hip-hop scene since the very beginning.
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