By Skaz One | @skaz1official
The self-styled rap tyrant of Richmond, CA, Hugo Monster is one of the best up and coming rappers in the Bay Area. I got the opportunity to see Hugo perform live at The Brick & Mortar Music Hall in San Francisco last month. He brought an unparalleled energy to the stage, the likes of which I had not seen in years. At least not at a show at a smaller venue. It’s easy to get hyped in front of 50,000 screaming fans at forty bucks a pop, but there’s nothing like spitting some dope lyrics in a more intimate setting.
But there’s more to this rising star than meets the eye. Hugo Monster was born in an impoverished area of Central America and immigrated to the United States as a child. Citing Tupac Shakur as a childhood influence, Hugo began writing raps in the late 90’s. Early in his career he was known as "MC Huey," but was forced to put his rap game on hold in order to concentrate on school and work. Unlike many rappers one sees in the mainstream media nowadays, Hugo was concerned with his future; whether that future involved hip hop or not. Fortunately, that future would involve rapping, in a big way.
First, he changed his name from MC Huey to Hugo Monster, due to his dominant stature and large presence. Next, he released his debut album, entitled Unleashed, in 2006. All the while, Hugo was performing as one half of the underground hip hop duo, Check One. Along with the other half of Check One, Breakadawn Juan, he recorded Off The Top, the duo’s only album to date. He also released two more solo albums himself. Hugo released a 5 song EP, entitled Hugo The Ugly, in March of 2013 and another full length solo album in 2015, entitled Monrocks.
Monrocks, as an album, is full of the same high energy as I saw when Hugo was performing on stage. As an artist in the San Francisco Bay Area myself, I know that there are a lot of tough crowds out there, especially at underground hip hop shows. But Hugo Monster had the crowd bouncing with the beat and partying like it was 1999. With tracks like "Salvadorian Delorean" and "League of My Own," Hugo Monster displays a style like no other in the Bay. Now partnered with producer Charlie Giant, Hugo continues to write pages and rock stages and his star is on the rise, so be on the lookout.
Some of the latest from Hugo Monster includes a new single by Check One named “Make It Happen” as well as a brand new music video. The video is now on youtube and features StevieBoi and J Morgan for their single entitled One Double O. Enjoy some of Hugo's catchy beats, smooth flows and funky videos below.