Mix some eccentric costumes, excessive makeup, energetic guys and ludicrous rap lyrics together and the product is the Memphis-based rap group Lord T and Eloise.
The sounds of this ridiculous rap duo and 527 giving away free beer made for another wild Wednesday in Murfreesboro. Having no common denominator of person type here, the crowd included every make and model of this town. From the less than tastefully dressed ladies and “kick your ass for no reason” dudes all the way to the kids who had actually heard of this musical project, everyone was front stage getting down to the infamous rap duo.
The night started off with an unexpected opening act. Total Savage took the stage for a 30-minute set of Beastie Boys-type rapping backed with the sounds of his Macbook. Someone in the sound booth was being prompted by Savage to navigate through a set of previously created beats and he would simply rap on top of them. Compared to the theatrics soon to take the stage, one could say that Savage provided a slightly uneventful show. However, as far as talent, this guy can’t be denied. He was spitting rhymes as fast as his mouth would move and never missed a beat. He was the sole person on stage and yet he danced, jumped and hyped the crowd with a platinum-selling attitude.
Obviously Savage has spent some time on the mic. Along with five or six originals, he also did a cover of the Beastie Boys track “Sure Shot.” Savage then told everyone to check out his new album dropping on iTunes Sept. 29 and performed his final track, “Mad Lunch.”
Then, the lights went down. The smoke machine started polluting the air with a white cloudy haze. The DJ walked into his booth behind an openly displayed Bible and beside a six-foot statue of a medieval knight. As the beat dropped, every hand in the place went soaring into the air and Lord T and Eloise came running on stage in their notoriously original costumes. Lord T was dressed in his long white curly wig and 18th-century aristocratic suit. His frilly white sleeves flowed as he screamed for everyone to “GET YOUR HANDS IN THE AIR!” His partner in this ever-growing rap sensation group is “Eloise,” the character that was born with golden skin (according to the history revealed in their “Million Dollar Boots” music video). Eloise’s entire face was painted “24 carrot” gold. His hair was wrapped in three-inch curlers adorning the top of his head. He wore a black tuxedo with a white button-up and a golden trimmed scarf garnishing his neck. He held his microphone with orange leather gloves and exuberated energy.
The set immediately kicked off with a cover of famous Memphis rap song “Relax and Take Notes,” originally performed by 8Ball and MJG. The first vocals heard on this track were Lord T spelling out “m-e-m-p-h-i-s.” From the same town as rap heroes such as Three Six Mafia and 8Ball, these guys are justifiably proud of where they come from.
After a couple more tracks including “In the Middle East,” Lord T informed his dancing barrage of fans that he had a special guest to bring to the stage. He pointed to the balcony and then ran in “Theodore Roosevelt.” This character was dressed equally to par with Eloise and Lord T, wearing a marching band hat and black suit. As the music continued, “Roosevelt” began break dancing on stage in between the two energetic rappers. Before long he had a mic of his own and joined in. At one point, Roosevelt climbed on top of a 10-foot speaker and continued his performance from high above the crowd.
Then Eloise made his way across the stage drinking beer directly from a pitcher and started belting out the opening lines to “Getting Richer.” Then the boys from Memphis decided to teach the Murfreesboro crowd a lesson in Memphis style. They screamed for everyone with a tucked in shirt to “Tuck it the f*** out right now!” This led into one of their more absurd tracks, “Untuxedo.”
For the last couple of tracks, Eloise draped a full-length golden cape around his neck and the guys filled the stage with random dancing girls from the audience. Amidst this chaotic dance party, the boys never missed a beat through a cover of Young MC’s “Bust a Move.” When Lord T announced that they were about to perform their final song, the crowd went wild. It was obviously time for the band’s best known track, “Million Dollar Boots.” At this point, it became clear that these rappers had actually drawn a group of people that knew their music. Everyone was dancing and singing along to the track that much of this band’s fame can be attributed to.
Lord T and Eloise have released two studio albums. The first, Aristocrunk, fell slightly under the radar. The more recent album, Chairman of the Bored, came out in 2008 and has gained a lot of popularity for the band. They have played such festivals as Memphis in May and Bonnaroo. Now they are traveling around the southeast on “The Great Recession Tour.” Their music is for sale on iTunes and you can check out further information about the group at their myspace site or through live youtube video.