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Charles Hamilton is in a mental institution

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Bossip is reporting the pink hedgehog recently checked into New York Presbyterian Mental Hospital to gain some “peace of mind.” Explains Charles, “All I wanted to do and still want to do is make music. It got to the point where I started talking in rhymes all the time, even in just regular conversations. And music just became me, so I thought it’d be a good idea if i checked into the hospital just to get my mind right.”

I like a lot of the dude’s music, but I can’t say I’m too surprised. The timing of this is also pretty poor, with his recently-launched comeback attempt and heartfelt open letter to the world this past year. I know he pissed a lot of people off with the whole J Dilla scandal, but he seems to me like a genuinely honest and good (if slightly crazy and/or misunderstood) guy. And even those turned off by the whole pink polo, Sonic the Hedgehog business might admit the man is a talented producer.

(via RapRadar)

Written by sean

July 27, 2010 at 3:21 pm

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Seu Jorge in the Village Voice

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I’ll admit my relative lack of familiarity with Brazilian music is something I should have remedied a long time ago. But everyone knows Seu Jorge from the  acoustic, Portuguese-language David Bowie covers he did for Wes Anderson’s The Life Aquatic (which I thought were fantastic, probably because I’m not as huge of a Bowie fan as a lot of people). Jorge recently sat down with Phil Freeman of the Village Voice to promote his new record, Seu Jorge and Almaz, which will apparently feature a more rock-y, “mangue beat” sound. I’d be lying if I told you I knew what that meant, but Jorge seems excited about it:

It’s a great moment, because it’s a new decade, and there’s the potential to find another way. Brazil has so much, in all areas . . . culturally there’s a new generation, and Lucio Maia said, ‘Let’s do it right now, because it’s a new decade. 2010 started things again.’ The new generation is hungry for news, information, for new conceptions, to rejuvenate what we need to do. And the new album can help with that — that’s our intention.

Continuing his Life Aquatic Sessions work, the album will be all covers, including Roy Ayers’ “Everybody Loves the Sunshine,” Kraftwerk’s “The Model,” Michael Jackson’s “Rock With You,” and some Brazilian songs. Sounds like a good excuse to brush up on your bossa nova. (And your “mangue beat,” for that matter).

You can read the full interview here.

Written by sean

July 27, 2010 at 2:57 pm

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My god, so they are killers…

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If Supreme Clientele is the Illmatic of the ’00s (and I have no problem with that comparison), this record is its “N.Y. State of Mind.” It’s a strong contender for hardest beat of whole record (note: hardest, not necessarily best), and Ghost drops two splintering, rambling verses with a rapped hook in the middle as a breather. Of course, every beat on Supreme Clientele is a banger, and Ghost rips them all, but this one particularly reminds me of the way Nas destroyed the first real song on his debut.

(The drums, it should be noted, are taken from “Synthetic Substitution,” one of the most-sampled breaks of all time, by the great Melvin Bliss, who passed away today. R.I.P.)

Like Clay Purdom put it in Cokemachineglow’s decade wrap up, “Supreme Clientele is the sound of a man animated fully by this lightning—composed of it, his voice trebly with electricity, explaining the contours of each electric flash in the language that works for him, the stories that work for him.” Nowhere is that electricity more evident than on this record.

“We lay low glitter wax full bangles/
Priceless rolls, lay around the God get tangled”

Supreme Clientele was a genre-refining triumph, its vaguely Joyceian free-associative poesy predating the postmodernism commercialized by Cam’ron and Lil’ Wayne by half a decade. I’m just trying to string together words as beautifully dense and joyful as Ghost’s pen. So what’s in a name?

Written by sean

July 27, 2010 at 2:11 pm

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Das Racist- Shut Up, Dude

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My review of Das Racist’s Shut Up, Dude for the Georgetown Voice:

shut up dude

When “Combination Pizza Hut and Taco Bell” blew up on the music blogosphere this summer, it provoked a firestorm of controversy—depending on who you asked, it was either insipid, repetitive drivel or witty, inventive joke rap. On Shut Up, Dude, the group’s debut mixtape, Himanshu Suri and Victor Vasquez retain the same goofy, culturally literate sense of humor while proving themselves capable lyricists. With limber, lazy flows over a range of dancy, bass-heavy electro beats that sound like a cross between vintange Timbaland and something that didn’t make the final cut of Kala, the duo mixes social commentary with erudite witticisms, poking fun at everything from racial stereotypes to cultural memes while .

The breadth of the cultural references here is truly astounding—Suri and Vasquez name-drop everyone from John Phillip Sousa to W.E.B. DuBois, call themselves “the black Tintin/ the Jewish Mel Gibson,” and compare themselves to the Zac Brown Band. Take one stretch of “Don Dada,” for example: “I shoplifted Tao Lin’s Shoplifting from American Apparel/ but I didn’t get caught, like Perry Farrel/ Hot Strawberry Darryl/ Hanna-Barbera/ Burberry cologne on/ looking for a skull to get my bone on.” Not many rappers would would even try to string together references to hipster-lit royalty, the frontman for Jane’s Addiction, a former all-star outfielder, and the creators of the Flintstones before euphemizing oral sex, but Shut Up, Dude, is littered with such effortlessly absurd non-sequiturs. Thanks to the alliteration and multi-syllable rhyming, though, the incongruous lines flow together easily. Suri and Vasquez are slyly astute students of hip-hop, jacking rhyme schemes from Jay-Z over a Ghostface beat, or biting a line from the Clipse and turning it into a Lil’ Wayne reference, but there’s too much self-deprecating or ironic humor here for anyone to mistake their precociousness for the pretentious, righteous swagger that dominates the underground these days.

Drug references and name drops aside, the mixtape skates from semi-serious social commentary to tongue-in-cheek cultural criticism without skipping a beat. It’s aesthetically cohesive, ultra-literate, and never afraid to laugh at its own absurdity. Somewhere in there, there’s something about corporatism, racism, the American dream, and what it means to be the son of Indian immigrants in Queens in 2010. It’s just tough to find it between all the toilet jokes and raps about weed-impaired White Castle runs.

Written by sean

July 18, 2010 at 6:25 am

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Hello world!

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Welcome to WordPress.com. This is your first post. Edit or delete it and start blogging!

Written by sean

July 18, 2010 at 6:02 am

Posted in Uncategorized