If the Wu-Tang Clan's form-like-Voltron rap supergroup approach has any equivalent on the left coast, it's probably the Bay Area's eight-man squad Hieroglyphics. And while they've only released two albums—1998's 3rd Eye Vision and 2003's Full Circle (as well as a 2005 DVD centered on the latter album's tour)—their rep as a lyrical powerhouse has been steadily and sturdily built with a constant string of singles, collaborations, solo joints and touring. Founder Del tha Funkee Homosapien is probably the best-known member of the group (don't be surprised if you hear cuts from this year's long-awaited The 11th Hour), but he's not alone: With Domino, Casual, Pep Love and the four-man crew Souls of Mischief (of "93 'Til Infinity" fame) completing the set, there's more than enough anthemic battle-rap skills to knock your third eye open. With Blue Scholars, Knobody, Musab, Prince Ali, Tanya Morgan. 18+.
Wed., Aug. 13, 8 p.m., 2008