May 092009

Which is the strongest track on the Analord-series?

AFX – Where’s Your Girlfriend

Much of that project reminds me of a favourite from Drukqs.

Aphex Twin – Vordhosbn

Richard’s machines play together with the same kind of warmth and joyful improvisation that you’d expect from a jazz band that’s known each other for a thousand years. Perhaps he’s the Hansson & Karlsson of IDM? Erik Satie as a bedroom producer? The white Miles Davis?

Is this his best track ever?

Apehx Twin – Polynomial-C

You get the impression that he made a thousand similar ones before arriving at this amazing discovery. It’s so simple, so cinematic, so perfect. If I have this in the headphones when leaving home, it will be a good day.

In some of his music, especially the meditative tracks from SAWII, there is a strong arhaic, collectively subconscious, nearly religious feeling. You almost believe him when he says he composed that album in a state of lucid dreaming. It’s fitting that John Peel interviews him at this place.

Aphex Twin – Stone In Focus

inget representerar bättre den förhöjda livskänslan som hör samman med den rena upptäckarglädjen i hemdatornätverkens generationer

May 082009

Some Vodka brand interviews the legendary Arthur Baker.

Was wondering the other day, when I found the weird but cool track posted below while record digging, what he has been up to since he produced Planet Rock (I mean, that record is my age. I mean that record got mad kids and grandchildren already)?

The Crazies & Arthur Baker Vs Felix Da Housecat – Quiet Riot

May 052009

After the holy trinity Dre and Primo and RZA, I put The Bomb Squad. Their wall-of-noise aesthetics, their approach to sampling, and their energy and aggression level (as well as their diversity) is as important a leap forward in boom bap research as the discoveries of Kurtis Mantronik or Marley Marl. Their sonic portrayal of the chaotic urban landscape is very much missed in rap music these days.

Public Enemy – Lost at Birth

Although they surely have influenced almost all producers working within hiphop, their sound gave even stronger echoes in other genres. Groups like The Prodigy, Chemical Brothers – matter of fact all that big beat, breakbeat, hardcore, jungle, drum n’ bass noise – would have been impossible, or at least would have sounded very different without Public Enemy‘s second and third album.

Public Enemy – Anti-Nigger Machine

Among other guest productions, they went on to lay the sonic landscape for Ice Cube’s brilliant first solo album, helping him to make a political record rivaling PE’s efforts. And on the Juice soundtrack they helped Rakim make one of his best songs ever (“I’m a put it on a bullet… and put it in your brain!“)

Rakim – Know The Ledge

As you can read in the Unkut interview, The Bomb Squad started as a soundsystem, and these days they, like many others, have continued their musical explorations into the realms of dubstep. Rockthedub has paid attention to this, and offers us two of their live mixes.

May 042009

Funkadelic – Cosmic Slop (official video)

This is nuts. No idea they had videos (alright, in lowest-fi quality but whatever).

The Dungeon Family of the seventies, but a hundred times more ground breaking. The Stooges teaming up with Sun Ra. Yeah, they seem to be making quite a scene running around in New York in priest robes, face paint, wolf masks and diapers. Quite a crowd seems to be forming around them.

A friend who grew up in Detroit saw them perform on some random TV show right when they were getting big (somewhere around 1970 I’m guessing). He was around 12 and said it was like the martians had landed. And the music: african jungle grit, dirty delta blues burned out in urban feedback terror, all wrapped up in some pulsating ghetto spaceship funk. They really had something going on, I mean they’re were more than just standing on the verge of getting it on.

Here’s that great article about the greatest groups of all time that you probably missed last time.

And if you’re smoking good, please get this over here.

Funkadelic – One Nation Under A Groove

Funkadelic – Whole Lotta BS

Funkadelic – Free Your Mind And Your Ass Will Follow

(Funk is its own reward.)

May 042009

More Crime (Barney) was one of the great standout tracks on Cormega’s Legal Hustle compilation. Listening through The Jack Artist, it’s clear that The Jacka got enough greatness to fill up a full length. He continues to lay down his raps with the understated, down to earth, reflective veteran confidence we learned to love on More Crime. And just like on that track the production is laidback and dreamy (sometimes even trippy; maybe that’s a Bay Area thing), built from the ground up with soul-samples that are treated with the attention and innovative spirit we know from a Ghostface record.

Feel This Clip displays a more hostile G-Funk, all pitched, psychotic Starchild raps and anger management synthesizers. You must balance the force. But when that fades into F@#k With the Mob we’re reminded a problem with one too many of these modern rap albums: too many guest raps.

Still, The Jack Artist is one of the more interesting rap albums of recent times.

May 032009

In Última Parada 174 Brazilian veteran director Bruno Baretto tackles the explosive tale of homeless Sandro who one day will take a bus full of people hostage in central Rio de Janeiro, a theme already explored in José Padilha’s brilliant documentary Ônibus 174.

While far from as thrilling and orignal as recent Brazilian masterpieces City Of God or Padilha’s Tropa de Elite, it’s a well executed project and has some great scenes, including a very tense opening (and the actor that portrays Sandro looks like a young Will Smith, which is a bonus).

(Fresh Prince in Rio de Janeiro.)

You get a much clearer view of the social situation for the very poor in Padilha’s documentary, but retelling the story here, in a more easily acessed format, focusing more on a traditional, character-driven structure, also fills a purpose. The story deserves retelling, not just the story about Sandro’s path through poverty and crime and prison and cocaine to a violent but strangely communicative death, but the story about police that kills street kids like their were cock roaches (and the middle class that applauds them for doing so, the interviews with random people in the street about the Candelaria incident being the most shocking part in Padilha’s documentary).

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