Sunday, July 25, 2010
This is a tale of two albums, one is the electro-pop masterpiece of "Rill Rill", the other is the loud and driving distortion of "Tell'em". These two concepts and sounds would never work, had they been used by another artist, Sleigh Bells manages to do this seemlessly, with each beat driving the guitar tracks. The album opens with "Tell'em", possibly one of the loudest and deepest songs I have ever heard. "Tell'em" features layers upon layers of Derek Miller's noise making, as well as a beat that sounds like it was made using metal garbage cans and broken glass. Through each song, the album makes sure to never lose its energy, one of the most energetic and noise filled tracks is "Crown On The Ground", an energy filled track that combines a catchy pop melody, with sheer noise, to create something truly unique. My favorite track on the album is "Rill Rill", a ringing acoustic guitar leads the listener through church bells and Alexis Krauss's fantastic vocal line. Every track in this song brings it one step closer to a pop classic, and leaves the listener satisfied, but wanting more. The first listen to this album doesn't do it justice, each song has so many intricate tracks and sounds, that its hard to notice half of them in one listen. It is a tale of two albums, two people, two listens, and one pop-masterpiece.
MF Doom is to hip-hop, what mid 60's Bob Dylan is to rock'n'roll, his poetry flows and rhymes and can appear to be random, but is deep in meaning, whether political or social. Much like Dylan's poetry, especially on tracks like "Tombstone Blues." MF Doom also has one of the greatest flows of any emcee alive, he dables in social, political, and religious issues, without making it obvious, he also manages to make it fit so perfectly with the music, on tracks like "Accordian" and "Great Day", where rhymes and saturated beats become one. Madlib is one of the best producers in hip-hop, because he turns down MF Doom's track to make it fit with the beat perfectly,unlike other producers who add empty noise in order to back the emcee. This technique is evident on the songs "Money Folder", "All Caps", and "Strange Ways". The entire album is constructed into one flow, with several short J Dilla style beats leading from one track to the next, sampling everything from Sun Ra to Gentle Giant, each sample fits so well together, its hard to tell exactly where the inspiration came from. The song "Fancy Clown"features a fairly well known sample by Z.Z. Hill, but it is crafted in such a way that the sample compliments Doom's rhymes, instead of interfering with them. "All Caps" is arguably the best track on the album, with MF Doom at the top of his game, and Madlib cutting the best beat on the album, the song is poetic in its sections, it is constantly changing themes, but in the end each sample and kick beat brings the listener closer to the true meaning, like each line in a poem. The album finishes with a marathon of fantastic tracks, "All Caps", then the organ driven "Great Day" and finally the spaced out "Rhinestone Cowboy", the proverbial climax and resolution of this hip-hop classic.
Wednesday, July 7, 2010
This show was recorded on the 4th of July, and features some brand new beats, as well as some tracks straight from the crate. The show show cases a few new podcasts I have picked up, including the Stones Throw podcast, and the Future Vintage Dam Funk set. Download the show here; http://soundcloud.com/urban-backcountry