It was barely ten in the morning when I had finally arrived in Lawrence, Kansas, home to the world renown sport of Basketball. I was rambling about James Naismith, the Canadian who traveled all the way to Kansas to invent this internationally known sport, I looked over at my travel partner’s phone and noticed a very special event that completely turned our day around. I shouted, “Wait, wait, wait, where is this happening?” We clicked on the Facebook event which read the following: Space Jesus, Zeke Beats, and Conrank at the Bourbon in Lincoln, Nebraska. That was it. Those few words were enough to get a guy who just flew 1006 miles a little bit more alert – not only was I going to visit Topeka for the first time (where I scarfed up a nice growler from Norsemen Brewing) I was finally getting a chance to learn about Nebraska’s rave culture. The Bourbon is apparently one of Lincoln’s top venues for EDM/Bass Music concerts, but were these Nebraskan’s truly ready for all of this to invade their scene for the night? It’s safe to say that EVERYBODY had a phenomenal evening.
When our three hour trek from Lawrence was finally over, I couldn’t help but look around at all the beautiful buildings that made up the downtown region of Lincoln. It wasn’t long before we were finally through the doors of the Bourbon – it was time to fulfill our Space Bass destiny. Fair warning, the Bourbon only takes cash at the door. We were only a handful of minutes into our experience before being greeted by an extremely friendly bouncer and some high energy ticket guys. If this is how the employees treat their guests, I could only imagine what the bassheads would be like. I was actually pretty excited to rage with some new faces and possibly make some new friends!
I got excited to see such a familiar face showing off his insatiable style as we quickly approached the front of the stage. It had been a little over a year and a half since I had experienced my first Zeke Beats performance at the fifth edition of Moonshine Music Festival. I had a chance to share a DJ of the Day Article that I wrote about him back in 2016 – as we were snapping our infamous selfie, Space Jesus came up and said “Hold on I wanna be in this.” I don’t know what it is about people from New Jersey, but they absolutely love me. And I love them to the moon and back.
I looked over at Marena and said, “I can’t believe I’m finally seeing Zeke Beats again, this man is an absolute scratch legend!” My favorite detail about a performance by Zeke Beats has to be his ability to scratch and play any two records at the same damn time! I was pretty amazed at the thought of only having been in the building for a total of three minutes before catching Zeke perform one of his hit collaborations with Eprom – “Humanoid 2.0“. The snazzy robotic sounds quickly kicked in as Zeke shouted “The Humanoid must not escape“, I immediately lost my mind because this was the first time I had ever heard this glorious tune on a massive sound rig. Not to mention that one of my best friends wrote an amazing article on this tune (Click Here to Read) – so it holds a special place in my heart.
I’m not sure if you’ve ever heard the incredibly zany sounds that “YUCK” has to offer, but it’s the perfect cyborg tribal banger that will have you busting out some pretty peculiar dance moves within seconds. I had to contain myself when I heard the cyborg yell “TRY AGAIN“. Zeke Beats also does a great job including other musicians’ top notch productions! He’s all about spreading that love – and as Zeke picked up the mic and shouted “Peace and Love Guys”, he mixed in a filthy new remix of What So Not that smacked us all down with the might and force of fifty Bass cannons! Other fantastic drops include a disgusting remix of Bassnectar and G Jones “Underground”, some sick scratches with Minnesota’s “HiLow“, a grotesque unreleased collab with Space Jesus that spawned a massive bug to appear on the visual projector, before it started tearing away at its own face to reveal a creepy second layer (not a sight to see for those with a weak stomach).
I have to give it up to Zeke Beats for throwing down such a massive performance. After having smashed down an unreleased Mr. Carmack tune, or edits of Lil Uzi Vert’s “XO Tour Lif3” where Uzi would shout “Push me to the Underground” instead of edge, a shout out to the headbangers by playing Space Laces ‘Bug Bass” and scratching up Carbin and AFK’s hit single “Boss”, Zeke asked everyone in the crowd to scream at the top of their lungs, with hopes of getting rid of any built up and unwanted anxiety. This man certainly knows how to interact with a crowd – and I could tell that these Bourbon residents surely appreciated kicking out some of this built up anger inside. Until the next time Zeke!
I was given word that Conrank had already performed before Zeke – I was slightly annoyed that I missed this rare opportunity to catch the heavy hitting UK legend, but maybe, just maybe, Ranky would come back out for some filthy b2b action with Space Jesus and Zeke Beats. Only time could tell! Only a few minutes had passed by before a tall, heavily clothed Space Jesus popped up on stage. Usually the man is sporting a basketball jersey, shorts and no shoes – but the relentless Nebraska chill called for a tall black beanie and a sweater. I thought Space Jeezy was going snowboarding to be honest, but when he hit play on the CDJ to unleash a sweet, sexy intro, I knew he was here to stay. It wasn’t long before the jacket and beanie were on the ground, as Space Jesus let down his insanely long hair – this was a tell tale sign that Space Jesus was ready to party.
I know I wasn’t the only kid in the crowd who lost their mind when the lyrics “I am Professor Genius” bled through the speakers. The alien roar and high pitched pigmy noises really caught my attention. As Professor Genius shouted “You are now a robot“, three headless men popped up on the screen and started walking in complete different directions. I guess Professor Genius scared them away – big ups to Esseks for hopping on board with Jeezy to create this one. But the robot feeling soon disappeared, as the infamous Digital Ethos x Space Jesus tune “This is a Signal” kicked into play. I feared that the entire city of Lincoln would be sucked straight out of the Earth and shot up into the realms of outer space. We also got blessed with his remix of the Instagram Celebrity theme song “Infinite Extravagance“. But what was truly extravagant were the crazy visuals that were playing during Jeezy’s set, such as these purple aliens and mountains that ferociously shifted throughout the stratosphere. I want to note that Space Jesus showed a lot of love to Peekaboo during his set – that “Technical Foul” drop gets me every time!
Space Jesus had just got done playing a beautiful new collaboration with Champagne Drip before shouting into the mic, “Hey Lincoln, I think we should just make all drugs legal right now, it would make things a whole lot easier” before proceeding to drop a fat tune that said “Have you purchased illegal drugs in the past two years?” before unleashing a world class drop on the crowd.
I was very thankful for the special announcement that Lincoln would get to experience a little surprise back to back set with Conrank and Zeke Beats. Joining the Australian and Brit was a third mysterious figure sporting a Scooby Doo head as he waved down the crowd. If the ground wasn’t so sticky, I would have dropped down and started rolling because these visuals were hilarious. This whole twenty minute interaction put a huge smile on my face because I was finally able to hear “Pull Out the Lazer” get smashed by its creator, and seeing all the smiles on these Nebraskans, Iowans and Kansans, made this sporadic trip to Lincoln worth every second (Click Here To Read The Article). All of the sudden, these cute elephants holding umbrellas started trickling down the screen, as Space Jesus asked the crowd “Yo who smokes weed in here?” before dropping the classic lines on the raging crowd “I’m having trouble passing blunts through these brass Knuckles“.
I’ll try to wrap this story up for you folks. I know I like to go in detail. Just a few more of my favorite memories here! Jeezy shouted to the crowd “Yo this one’s for all my wooks” as he dropped his infamous collab with Colorado’s very own Dirt Monkey.. “Sofa Surfin“. Have you ever bounced around from couch to couch? I’ve said it once and I’ll say it again, these things happen folks. The trio morphed the wook anthem into a sweet “Space Boss” and “Bass Cannon” double. We were all in Bass music heaven at that point. Can you imagine a bunch of funny cops trippin’ out and dancing to “Ichabod Crane“? I’m telling you guys, whoever manned the visuals that night did a superb job. I’d be doing you guys dirty if I didn’t mention the sexy “Meatball Parm” drop that Conrank dropped on the crowd. This new collab with Space Jesus came out just days after the Nebraska show. Maybe it was a way to celebrate a successful last stop in their never ending tour.
The guys ended the night in a loving, blissful, and emotional fashion by playing the timeless hit “Everybody Falls In Love Sometimes“. As the smooth lyrics that inspired Tory Lanez to write one of the sickest “Luv” songs of all time, I look across the beautiful Lincoln crowd to take in all the smiles. Space Jesus, Conrank, and Zeke Beats literally ended a four hour blessing for the state of Nebraska, and Marena and I were there to experience it. Sometimes life can give you the greatest gifts when you least expect them. By the way, we ran into the boys at a small bar across the street, and as I was snapping my photo with Conrank, Jasha came in to join the party and photo bombed me for the second year in a row. I’m not sure what it is about folks from New Jersey, but they absolute love the Riddim Professor. Thank you for the wonderful show guys! And to the good people over at the Bourbon, I can’t wait for my next experience at your place! The vibes are OFF THE WALL, glorifying.
(Huge Shout Out to Trevor Scott of Omaha Night Life)
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