Local group Aboriginal holds the distinction of being one of the very few bands — if not the only one — that can boast of having opened for both Black Sheep and L.A. Guns. Few acts could, but true to its name, the quintet's sound is raw and fresh. The bandmates' music is more distorted and aggressive than the usual live hip-hoppers', but funkier and less corny than stereotypical rap-rock dudes'. They've also got a laudable hunger: Although Aboriginal's debut album, 4.656%, was released on indie Gorilla 12 Pack earlier this year, the guys have been playing together for eight years. The tenacity paid off last Saturday, when they took the second stage at the Rock the Bells festival at Bayfront Park.

The record is a multifaceted package, its 12 songs traveling equally through boom-bap drum beats, DJ kicks, minor-key atmospherics, and dubby space-outs. Vocals come courtesy of Discrete, who raps with the comfort and instinctive rhythm of a real MC, sometimes channeling Zach de la Rocha when he gets really amped. Thursday's performance at Flavour will give the group another chance to strut its dexterous stuff, when Aboriginal plays an acoustic-only set.


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