The Spotlight | Barclay Crenshaw at U Street Music Hall (February 18, 10pm)
Channeling a love affair with classic ’90s hip-hop, an affinity for otherworldly themes and an ear for raw funk, Barclay Crenshaw uses his given birth name to bare his soul and deliver a slowed-down, emotive collection of collaborations and instrumentals. This self-titled debut album is a left-field departure from his better-known alias, Claude VonStroke, but the quality is undeniably the same.
This debut LP represents a mixture of modern organic beats blended gorgeous melodic moments and underlying grittiness create an experience that is eclectic, expressive and expansive. Guests include a wide array of artists from bass maestro Mr. Carmack to the U.K.’s inspired Lady Chann, Flatbush emcees The Underachievers, and even a Cool Kids reunion from Chuck Inglish & Sir Michael Rocks. Coded art and epic visuals depicting ancient alien abductions and explorations of time and space furthers the sense of mystery and the unknown, harking back to the past while gazing into the future.