The best hip-hop shows coming this summer
Some of the best emcees in the world are touching down in Ireland in the near future
Rap fan? Check out our pick of the best hip-hop shows happening in Ireland this summer. Whether you’re into old-school boom-bap, modern-day trap, Irish rap, alternative hip-hop, or a little bit of everything, we’ve got something for you!
Mango X Mathman
Vicar Street | Dublin | 20 May 2023
You can’t speak about Irish rap without mentioning the rapper/producer pairing of Mango X Mathman. The duo accumulated a following by expertly blending influences of UK grime & American hip-hop, all the while staying true to their Dublin roots. They’ve decided to call it quits as a musical twosome but not before one last hurrah. They take their final bow together with a hometown, farewell show at Vicar Street this May.
Benny The Butcher
Button Factory | Dublin | 26 May 2023
The Butcher’s comin’! Straight from Buffalo, NY to The Button Factory, Dublin. Benny The Butcher, one-third of critically acclaimed gangster rap collective, Griselda, stops off for a headline Irish date this May. The New York native has a litany of bangers to perform, with much-praised solo projects under his belt like ‘The Plugs I Met 1 & 2‘ and, ‘Tana Talk 4‘, not to mention his string of collaborative efforts with Conway The Machine, Westside Gunn and The Black Soprano Family.
Dublin, Belfast, Cork | June 2023
Manchester, an area recognised the world over for churning out amazing musical talent, isn’t a region that many would associate with hip-hop. However, the scene has grown ten-fold over recent years with a fresh wave of talent emerging, a wave that Aitch is firmly at the forefront of. With sold-out tours, multiple award nominations, and high-profile link-ups with the likes of Stormzy and AJ Tracey, Aitch has put his hometown on the map and then some. He performs a trio of Irish dates this June.
Wu-Tang Clan & Nas
3Arena | Dublin | 9 June 2023
Trendsetters, trailblazers, and icons, Wu-Tang Clan have become a name synonymous with the golden age of East Coast hip-hop. A collective littered with stars, RZA, Raekwon, Method Man, Ghostface Killah, GZA, and the late ODB have also seen major success in their solo endeavors.
Not only is their debut album ‘Enter the Wu-Tang (36 Chambers)‘ regarded by many as the best rap album of all time, their 2015 ‘Once Upon a Time in Shaolin‘ (limited to a single copy) holds the record as the most expensive work of music ever sold. Recently nominated for Pollstar’s Hip Hop Tour of The Year, their sold-out 2022 ‘N.Y. State of Mind Tour’ with Nas proves that the Killa Beez have yet to lose their sting.
Your favourite rapper’s favourite rapper, a true master of the craft. Nasir Jones first burst onto the scene as a fresh-faced 20-year-old with the groundbreaking ‘Illmatic’, an album that sits atop many a rap aficionado’s best albums list.
Fast-forward almost 30 years and 14 albums later and Nasty Nas is still in full effect. His longevity, which can only be matched by former foe Jay-Z, is a testament to the quality he continues to produce. Reminiscent of Di Caprio’s Oscar win, Nas finally got his hands on a long-overdue GRAMMY in 2021 with ‘King’s Disease’. He joins forces with fellow New Yorkers, Wu-Tang Clan at Dublin’s 3Arena this June.
The Helix | Dublin | 26 June 2023
An artist that perfectly straddles the line between the underground and the mainstream, Denzel Curry has developed a reputation as one of the most consistent and versatile rappers in the game. In an era that often favours beats over lyrics, Denzel has found the perfect balance of layering thought-provoking messages over melodic and often hard-hitting instrumentals. A master of the concept album, 2022’s ‘Melt My Eyez See Your Future’ has been lauded since it’s release, landing on many year-end, best album lists. Catch him live at The Helix this June.
The Academy | Dublin | 3 July 2023
Compton has long been a breeding ground for stars with some of Hip Hop’s most recognisable names hailing from Los Angeles’ Hub City. YG is one of the latest premium products coming off the famous California conveyor belt. He first grabbed the attention of the mainstream with the smash hit ‘Toot It & Boot It’, earning him a place in the 2011 XXL freshman list alongside the likes of fellow Compton native Kendrick Lamar. He followed that up with his debut album ‘My Krazy Life’, a raw portrayal of street life that garnered critical and commercial success in equal measure. Now a veteran in the game, he’s showing no signs of slowing down any time soon. He brings the ‘Red Cup Tour’ to The Academy this July.
3Olympia Theatre | Dublin | 16 July 2023
Signed to J Cole’s Dreamville imprint, JID cannot be accused of riding the coattails of his star mentor, carving out his own lane with his visceral flow and complex rhyme schemes. Already a force to be reckoned with in rap’s current landscape, 2022’s ‘The Forever Story’ has catapulted the Atlanta rapper to another level. Seen by many critics as the best album of the year across any genre, the ambitious LP has cemented JID’s place as one of the most inventive rappers currently plying their trade. He takes to the 3Olympia stage this July.
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If hip-hop isn’t your thing, maybe one of these amazing bands will take your fancy. Check out the reunion tours happening this year HERE.