After a recent retooling period, Miami New Times' 2009 Best Hip-Hop Artist winner, Mayday!, is back stronger than ever. With a fleshed-out line-up, the group is now a full-on live act, complete with bubbling percussion, ice-cold keyboards, and a singing/rapping interplay courtesy of BernBiz and Wrekonize, respectively. But where so many live hip-hop acts wander into jammy, funk corniness, Mayday!'s pop chops win out here, with the songs snaking along with indelible melodies and a soulful swing.
This past March saw the band making some local high-profile appearances at Carnaval on the Mile, and the 8th Street Jam at Calle Ocho, before heading out to Austin to spread the gospel at SXSW. Now, the band returns to its favorite Thursday-night hangout, Shake at the Vagabond, for the second time in less than two months. The band's residency at Jazid is notorious for its craziness, with clothes falling away as the hours go on. Will the Shake crowd best them? Get there and do your job.
Mayday! Doors open 10 p.m. Thursday, April 8. The Vagabond, 30 NE 14th St., Miami. Admission is $5; age 21 and up; 305-379-0508; thevagabondmiami.com