Thursday, November 27, 2008

Single, Please Mingle: Viktor Vaughn's 'Never Dead'

Never Dead - Viktor Vaughn feat. Curtis Strifer

I really like this song. Let me explain why.

(Full disclosure: I’m a rabid MF Doom fan. The only reason I don’t call myself a stan is coz I’m not a completist with regards to his catalogue – I’m not particularly interested in getting his Special Herbs Instrumental sets. I’m a lyrics-head at heart, so Doom as a producer is not something I’m fiendin’ for. )

‘Never Dead’ is one of my fave joints off 'Vaudeville Villain' (Doom's second solo album, which he released under the moniker of Viktor Vaughn). Not surprising, since Doom's catalogue is chock full of great collabos (Ahem collabos, as in two emcees in the same booth, feeding off each other verses, as opposed to artists recording shit @ home and hitting send on their iphone. Emoticons @ the end of your attachments don’t constitute a collaboration, dudes). This particular track is a collaboration with M. Sayyid (of Anti Pop Consortium), who appears here under the moniker of Curtis Strifer. So if you’re keeping track, this is basically MF Doom (real name Daniel Dumile) as Viktor Vaughn featuring M. Sayyid as Curtis Strifer – Clearly, this is shamelessly pandering to schizophrenic, rap fanatics (Schizos are an extra-small, ultra niche audience sure, but if you take all their split personalities into account, this base is ‘MTV Teen Choice Awards’ big).

Speaking of split personalities, the beat’s all 'Dr-Jekyll-on-the-brink-of-turning-into-Mr. Hyde' evil. Both emcees clearly recognize this and bring their A-game here. As for the lyrics ..well as far as I can tell, its this high school narrative about young Doom out to hurt the 9th graders who stole his Donkey Kong Game. Seriously. I swear.

And as far as the conclusion goes, based on Doom’s last verse, I get the impression that he gets away with shooting the aforementioned Donkey Kong bandits (“There's no finer sound than when you let off a nine round / Before the slug find the ground, V be in Chinatown”).

Now, you’re thinking: Dude! This is High School Musical, with blood splatter! This cannot get any more awesome.

But then shit gets weird.

Well in all fairness, shit has always been weird in this track. Most notably, while Doom’s been pretty reasonable in sticking to this wonderful 9th grade vendetta, Curtis Strifer has been much more loose with the storyline– he’s been soaking his spit with some majorly surrealistic imagery. How surreal? Well, lets just say that dude’s first verse starts out with the lines:

Curt Strifer, the loon goon with the tunes in his tomb
Hotter than june/since had a twisted crib into he fumes
Kids trip on his broom/press twills for schills, shag with the halfmoon

So right off the bat, you know someone’s spiked the kool-aid.

The strangest part is that the tail end of Doom’s last verse, starts to blend in with Strifer’s voodoo jazz - Right after discussing his on-the-run exploits post-shooting the annoying videogame robbers, he starts talking about being in some 'hood black market,' where we encounter this random wizard-like dude ("
I watched him freeze roaches and bring 'em straight back to life /he used a different approach than I ever read /the only thing he ever said was 'the roach is never dead' ")

Word? Like, WTF is going on? Am I missing something here? Is this shit a Luis Bunuel script? My interpretation is that after Doom shoots his targets, he realizes that shit is a mess, and therefore looks toward a wizard to make things right. This is the most reasonable conclusion I have come up with.

So like me, you’re thinking: this has been, for the most part, a great track with a fun storyline, but shit got wonky towards the end and I need closure. I mean, who is this random dude who brings dead roaches back to life? Why are 9th graders so unstable?

Don't despair. Strifer's got one last verse and that should tie up the loose ends. He'll provide us with some much needed clarity, I'm sure.

Enter the song's last verse, courtesy Strifer.

And that was science for the head /so we did the knowledge
and sped to the shed / mixin dog bone with egg
(*Sidenote: Feel free to slap yourself for expecting logical closure*)
It says : Add body hair, the heart of a hen,
a fig, lay it under the bed will turn back time
and thats just what we did
next day walked in the school from the crib laughing,

yo limpin like a cane / and as I pass V

Viktor Vaughn : Yo c, you see I got my game, right?

And that’s how the song ends. Viktor gets his game back. So I guess it’s a happy ending after all. Just another typical story about having your donkey kong game stolen, executing vengeance on the robbers responsible for this, and aligning yourself w/ a roach-freezing, witch doctor. All this before time travelling with your looney friend, back to your peaceful past.

Can we get a mini series, HBO? Pitch it as Prison Break on PCP. I'm in.

Wednesday, November 26, 2008

P.I.F.F - Bangladesh Anthology

Coolio called

Bangladesh Crawford – Anthology

One of my compadres just sent me the above link – It’s a fairly comprehensive compilation of record producer Bangladesh’s work. Wait before you click download, damnit. *slaps your wrist* Let us say grace first, childrens. Praise be to our internet cable provider. Amen. K, go ahead now.

The very first time I paid attention to Bangladesh’s production was when
Kelis’ ‘Bossy’ came out – The track fared reasonably well on the charts as you may recall, but it didn’t quite blow the fuck up into crossover consciousness. Surprising, since it has ‘Umbrella’-level, stadium status written all over it. Sidenote: On the gossip & controversy tip (Excuse me while I get my Mary Hart on) - A really interesting tidbit about ‘Bossy’ that wasn’t addressed anywhere (as far as I know ) was how this song seemed like Kelis’ rebuttal to 50 Cent’s “Piggy Bank”; a diss track that included a blatant dart thrown at Nas’ way. In case you've forgotten, Piggy Bank included the LOLarious lines: “Kelis said her milkshake brings all the boys to the yard/Then Nas went and tattooed the bitch on his arm.” Well, Bossy’s defiant chorus goes like this: “That’s right, I brought all the boys to the yard/ And that’s right, I’m the one that’s tattooed on his arm / I’m bossy / I’m the bitch you love to hate / I’m the chick that’s raised the stakes” Are you gonna pretend like this is all a coincidence?? Umm, ring, ring HELLOOOOO friend-o? Why was this never a topic of discussion? Had Jive been enterprising enough to sell this retaliation angle, her album may have moved a few more units. Maybe Kelis would still be here. Making records, as opposed to designing high heels with Ashanti.

Anyways, despite loving 'Bossy', I didn’t bother digging any further into Bangladesh’s catalogue, coz frankly I didn’t think he had one - for some strange reason I assumed he was this new kid on the block who just hit it big, right from the get go. So every few months after Bossy, when the next Bangladesh sleeper-single dropped on blogs, I actually assumed I was in the loop on his output. Then ‘
A Millie’ inexplicably exploded on the scene like a ch-ch-ch-chopper (notably without the Almighty Power of Allah). With this newfound exposure (i.e industry buzz & a fan base that, at the very least, includes your Sister, Brother, Son, Daughter, Father and a motherfucking copper), I’m assuming his star’s gonna shine brighter in the near future.

Hey, remember how I mentioned having this silly idea that Bangladesh was just getting his industry feet wet with ‘Bossy’? Well, this anthology puts my dumbass assumptions to shame. Like, did you know he produced a whole bunch of joints on 8Ball & MJG’s Living Legends album? That he has production credits on Ludacris’ first two albums, including ‘What’s your Fantasy’??? Well I didn’t. In my defense though, I am semi-retarded.

Regardless, for the bored and curious, this be that P.I.F.F. As in, Pay It Forward, Foo’

P.S About naming this segment, Pay It Forward, Foo’ – I’m merely taking back what’s mine. You know the main social experiment premise of the movie,
Pay it Forward ? Well I had that idea first – I actually publicly discussed a variation of it during an elocution competition in Grade 7. Despite the fact that my speech was clearly ahead of its time, I only won 3rd place. (I believe the judges discriminated against me because I was semi-retarded. Also, what the heck, I’ll accuse them of racism too. And molesting me) Grrrrr. I try to close my eyes and forgive Haley Joel Osment for usurping my limelight, but all I see is dead people.

Sunday, November 23, 2008

Mindfuck Manifesto: Pregnant Man

Who is your daddy & what does he do?

Caveat: This is a barely-edited, think out loud post. Effort is for amateurs. Tell ‘em, Dedication 3.

This story dropped a few weeks ago, so you're probably familiar with it - It’s the
man gets pregnant story of 08. I'm assuming it got heavy burn all across hungry news networks around the globe. Call me a schizo if you must, but I think the streets is talking. As per usual though, I’m slightly miffed that they’re missing the finer details. Everyone’s obviously just absorbing the superficial wow factor in well, a man getting pregnant. Many of you probably dismissed the story coz these Junior-type urban legends seem to get unravelled as hoaxes every two years or so. But the shock-and-awe headline’s just a herring, holmes. If you dig just a tad bit deeper into the story you realize that this dude, Mr Thomas Beatie was actually a dudette - As was the case with the last real pregnant man story, he/ she is a "transgendered person, born female, who had his outward features medically altered to achieve a more masculine appearance but kept his reproductive organs intact." I’ve heard news networks claim that he got pregnant by artificial insemination, but I personally think this is just him/her covering up for the actual man who impregnated him/her.

And yes, that is the part of the story, I think everyone's missing - THE OTHER MAN. dun dun dun. Scroll with me, shawty.

1) Before we get into the false premise of the OTHER MAN conspiracy that I believe in, let's discuss the issue of how we’re gonna refer to Mr/ Mrs Beatie- Now, a close friend of mine refers to him/her as 'the lesbian' – She chooses to believe that women who want to be men are essentially lesbians. Makes sense, right? But I have a problem with the simplistic 'the lesbian' label. He/she’s sexual orientation and preference has never been explicitly specified in the article. Now keeping in mind the fact that he/she is originally a woman - It could very well be that Beatie is not a lesbian; she is merely a straight woman who just happens to want to be a man. So, even with a man's appearance, she is a straight woman who wants to do other men. (Which would make her gay as a man, mind you.) As you can see, nomenclature and categorization is clearly a problem, so I'm gonna stick with 'he/she' for now. And to suit my next point, lets assume that he/she is a lesbian aka a she with he-like tendencies and preferences.

2) Now to the unlikely conspiracy I believe in – the OTHER MAN of the story. Now I’m not interested in exploring the other man’s responsibility as a father (It'd be worth examining the story in this light though, especially since there's been this recent trend of men being more vocal about questioning their role and rights with regards to birth of a child. Pretty thorny issue really, especially since it’s tacitly connected to the issue of abortion and the women’s rights movement. Not going there dudes. I’ma do the MC Hammer running man, if you don’t mind. Can’t touch this.)

To clarify I call the man, that according to me allegedly impregnated he/she, ‘the other man’, coz I'm keeping my mind open to the possibility that he/she is sort of a man right now (albeit one who’s soon to become a mother). If we are to buy the premise that he/she in his/her route to become a man, he/she likely resembles a man now- and this means that the man who slept with he/she must have been gay. And that’s the premise I’m most interested in- Coz this other man was probably just looking for a harmless fling. A wham-bham-thank-you-man, booty call. Its not like his rendezvous with another man would yield a baby right? But then BAM! He gets hit with the news that the dude he slept with is pregnant. I'd like to see the look on his face when he gets the news. Kodak moments to cherish, my friends.

I guess what I’m most fascinated by is the whole gender-defying territory that a transgendered individual occupies. It’s like bye, bye binary codes of sexuality. I mean it’s easy for us to hate gays - they are dudes who like to get jiggy with other dudes - but this story is just weird.
He/she is in a happy relationship his wife, and is currently expecting a second child. How do you discriminate against that which you can’t quantify? How do you efficiently hate something that you can't place in a proper category of contempt? Man, must be so goddamned confuzzled right now. Nicely done, he/she!

I totally understand if some of you think this post was a waste of your time. Just thought I’d point out a mindfuck
to marvel at. Just some fast food for thought.

Saturday, November 15, 2008

Mindfuck Manifesto: Urine - A Revolution

Duchamp does not play, Dada

If you pick up a newspaper these days, chances are pretty high that you’ll come across a story mourning the state of the world. But know what ? no worries - the world has always had its doomsday criers. The human spirit is nothing if not resilient. In fact, some of mankind’s brightest ideas have arguably come from its darkest times. So, as the world undergoes a seemingly startling amount of political, social & economic turmoil, you have to ask yourself, what kind of exciting cultural movements have been gaining steam? What fiesty feats of creativity will mankind achieve in these dark days?

Ladies and gents, if I may have a few seconds of your time, I'd like to give you the Urine Revolution. What? Thats the most stupid thing you've heard in your life, you say? There’s no such thing as a social movement for the upheaval of urine visibility, you yell?

Well naysayer feast your eyes on merely a few, urine-related stories that have recently leaked into the press

Urine therapy - Well, this isn't so much a recent newstory as much as it is a public service reminder regarding the subversive artform of Urine therapy. To quote wikipedia, urine therapy pertains to "applications of human urine for medicinal or cosmetic purposes, including drinking of one's own urine and massaging one's skin with one's own urine." I don't have much to add, but feel free to read more about this rarely publicized practice @ your own leisure.

R Kelly brings Urine to the headlines– The Pied Piper pisses his pipes all over a prepubescent girl. The golden shower that was all over the news. We might have hastily judged Kellz as a pedophile and a freak-a-leak, but you might wanna start thinking of him as an innovator, a trailblazer, maybe even a martyr for his cause. Admonished for taking a stand. The Real Master P. The Martin Luther King of Urine Facial Activism. He had a (wet) dream.

Civilians pissing on law enforcement – Stories of cops abusing their power is nothing new, but civilians finally exercising their inalienable right to piss in protest certainly is- With the increased level of homelessness in the world today, piss protests seem poised to be the new wave of anarchist expression.

Astronauts to drink purified piss on space shuttle – Yes, you read right. NASA has developed a method to "process the crew's urine for communal consumption." All I'm sayin' is, that space shuttle's gonna have some seriously odd water cooler conversations. Mmmm minty, Is this your work, Johnson? You little dog you.

These are just a handful of headlines holmes, a cursory google search is recommended for the cautiously curious.

But remember folks, not all that glitters is gold. The path towards acheiving mainstream acceptance for Urine is an
ardous one; a sloppy, slippery slope unlike any other.

So until we all get there. Keep the faith and
hold on strong.

P.S Bonus: The Internets Celebrities take you to school on the subversive art of leaks

Thursday, November 13, 2008

Anal-ytical Appreciation: Haggard Makes Headlines Again

Make a stripper fall in love, T-Pain on them hoes

Cringe @ the title if you must, but ALL blowjob innuendos seem like winners to me.

In case you aren’t up to speed on the Ted Haggard story until now, here’s a snappy recap: Famed, influential evangelical preacher, gets caught in a sex scandal with a male prostitute. Played-out tale of a fallen angel. Yknow, whatevs, another day, another dollar.

But now Ted Haggard’s back in the news again – Yesterday, he came out with
remarks about how he was abused as a child and how its had a lasting impact on him.

Obviously, with Prop 8 just being passed, the back room banter and the front yard protests surrounding gay rights is getting louder. I personally don’t have any special comments to make about this complex issue (well, at least not any that’ll enlighten any of you). But I guess Ted had to come out w/ an explanation about how he was lured into the ‘sin’ of homosexuality. Yknow, lest you think he was responsible for his actions.

Now before we take sides on this issue, can we all take a second to give a big shout out to beautiful, baby Jesus? Even in this time of mental, spiritual, and economic meltdown, JC takes the time to hallelujah hollaback with delightfully hilarious news stories such as this. Jesus, much like the Joker, just wants to put a smile on that face. Well, may your will be done, blessed baby Jesus. Amen. K, brothers and sisters, for today’s sermon, please turn your cursors to the Haggard parables from the Good Book of Google. We will be meditating on a few of its highlights.

1) If you’re a rap fan, your eyes should have already grabbed the name of the manho named in the Haggard Scandal – Mike Jones. Who?
Mike Jaaaaaaawnes. Who? Mike Jaaaaaaaawwwnnnes. Poor dude never gets a break. First Trae, now this. Hey, if it was in fact Ice Age’s Mike Jones, then fair-weather Houston rap fans should be glad – apparently, customers is still tippin’

2) Snap your fingers, now do a step. Man ho Mike Jones’ got attitude y’all.
This is his olive branch to Ted: “I wish him well. I wish his family well. My intent was never to destroy his family. My intent was to expose a hypocrite.” My LOLmeter’s on swoll.

On the aftermath of being Jacksonned, by one of his father’s employees, @ the age of 7: “Haggard said he later became "a conservative Republican, loving the word of God, an evangelical, born-again, spirit-filled, charismatic, all those things.” Hmmmkay. On one hand, I love people who refer to themselves as charismatic. On the other, this isn’t the greatest pitch to spread the gospel. Hey y’all, I was abused at 7 by my daddy’s friend. This led to me being a successful Republican church leader. You can do it too. With just 5 easy payments of..…

On his family: “My wife - all my sin and shame fell on her.” Yeah sure Ted, it was the shame that hurt. Also mofo, I believe the problem was that your sin didn’t fall on her. You spilled it all over Mike Jones, remember? (Who? Mike Jawwwwnes Who? Mike Jaaawwwnes. Good God, I. cant. stop. That chant is pure crack)

Regarding his meth-use allegations: “I never kept it very long because it was wrong. I was tempted. I bought it. But I never used it.” And you thought Bill Clinton’s ‘never inhaled’ line was tits. Ted, dude, I get it, I use the same line when someone asks me about the Silhouette yogurt packs in my desk drawer. Doubt they buy the excuse, though. (Meanwhile, somewhere far, far away in a church near you. “Phhhew, my pastor’s merely purchasing meth from a man ho. Glad that’s settled”)

Unnecessary News Detail Winner: “In the message, Haggard revealed that he and his wife, Gayle, intend to leave Colorado Springs and pursue master’s degrees through online courses.” Ay Teddy, one love and all that jazz, but I really don’t care if you finally decided to pursue your deVry dreams.

Minister Tim Ralph, on Haggard’s ‘sexual addiction’ counseling: "He is completely heterosexual," "That is something he discovered. It was the acting- out situations where things took place. It wasn't a constant thing."

Completely heterosexual, eh? Dang! Me, on the other hand? Only 50/50. Every now and then, I grab a strawberry dacari, curl back on the couch and black out on So You Think You Can Dance marathons. Ayo Haggard, being a 50-year-old who needs intensive three-week therapy to reassure himself that he’s straight? Not a good look, partner.

8) In light of this scandal, I’d like you to revisit the actual titles of two of
Ted’s bestselling books: “Dog Training, Fly Fishing, and Sharing Christ in the 21st Century” & “Taking It to the Streets” Really.

9) Finally, today, in Jokes That Write Themselves, Mr Haggard w/
an actual quote regarding the church and the scandal: “We consistently blow it, when those opportunities arise

Ahhh. God is good.

Tuesday, November 11, 2008

Single, Please Mingle: Krallice's 'Wretched Wisdom'

Sudoku can be such a pain in the ass.

This song is such a delightful can of relentless whoop-ass. Since I’ve not been actively searching for new metal since the beginning of the year, it was pretty easy to ignore the slow but steady buzz Krallice has been building. But then I heard ‘Wretched Wisdom.’ Goddamn Vince McMahon, talk about laying the smackdown! There’s so much to like in here.
Pitchfork and Geekdown have great album reviews if you wanna get a better feel for the nuances that make Krallice really great. To an amateurish metal enthusiast like me, it just sounds great (Hey! metal nOObs are people too, ok?)

Just a quick warning note on the vocals by Mick Barr. Its..well..See yknow how metal has these typical, throaty ‘arrrrg-I’m-gonna-stab-you-in-your-face-and-bathe-in-your-blood’ shrieks? And then there’s the guttural ‘Listen-as-my-hungry-belllly-speaks-to-you-infidel’ growl? Nothing wrong with those per se, but the vocals on this record are on some other shit. It actually sounds like you’re overhearing a torture victim escape from captivity, making a run for their life in deserted landscape. Come to think of it, Barr’s vocals sound like its being chased by the ‘arrrrg-I'm-gonna-stab-you-in-your-face-and-bathe-in-your-blood’ shriek. It’s a hopeless is-anybody-out-there cry. Mangled devastation, yasmellme? No?

KK. Remember that weird scene in Casino Royale, where the arch villain is torturing James Bond by whipping some slingshot thingamajig at his balls? And how Bond’s all crazy-cool about it? Well if I were Bond in that situation, I would definitely be screaming like Barr.

Shit, guess I’m not really selling this review well, am I? Guess you'll have to listen to the track for yourself.

Friday, November 7, 2008

Anal-ytical Appreciation: Jim Jones' Pop Champagne

Press play, player haters. Show some respect. Jimmy’s been in his dingy dungeon, valiantly trying to put that crack pipe down. Maury and 7th Heaven reruns have profoundly changed him - He doesn’t want to stay perpetually high, no lie, and you should know this. He’s been focusing his lack of talent on cooking up a worthy follow-up to his monster smash ‘Ballin’. Will he succeed? Or will he continue to stay in the one hit wonder league alongside the esteemed likes of Tatu, Vanilla Ice, and Bobby McFerrin?

Here’s my two (x 4) cents on the video:

1) How does Jimmy jump on a Ron Browz track, and then release it as a ‘Jim Jones featuring Ron Browz’ exclusive? Hmm. Must be one of his many trend-setting tactics. Don’t sleep on it. On a related note, the next house party I get invited to, I’m gonna go welcome the host - "Make yourselves at home, folks"

2) Speaking of Ron Browz, the hook is not too shabby. It’s got an interesting ‘grown-man-trying-to-make a-drunk-bellydancer-anthem’ feel.

3) The video, on the other hand, is just a Ballin’ Remix knockoff, with champagne replacing dollar bills. Another sad reminder of how bad the economy is doing – Rappers can’t even afford fake cash.

4) Jim Jones is a stunningly bad rapper. We all know this, but hearing his verse on this joint, will make you look around the room and say it out loud. You will then pause, shake your head, roll your eyes and emphatically yell: “Seriously

5) I know this is a really lazy, predictable cheapshot, but Jimmy’s hygiene is seriously on-route to becoming a documentary on the Discovery Channel (Voiceover: we know see Jimmy in his natural habitat. Watch closely as he proceeds to lick himself thoroughly to ward off predators). I mean, how does this man (even when cloaked in the brightest of brand names, in the most luxurious of locales) always manage to look like he needs a scrub-a-dub-dub? That ain’t a beard homey, that’s just dust mites. Forget Dame Dash, Jimmy needs to pal around w/ Bubble Bath. How ‘bout some swag splash with soap, son?

6) Why are Juelz’s eyes bulging so far out his out skull (gang?), @ the beginning of his verse? For someone who’s commanding girls to get naked, he sure doesn’t seem very excited about his prospects. Alarmed, maybe. It’s a frightened, getmeouttahere glare. I'm talking about a ‘nuh-uh-nana-don’t-make me-visit-grandada-again-he-likes-to-play-touch-touch-with-my-peepee’ glare. You get the feeling that he just realized that he was in a Jim Jones video.

7) Even the slowest of the slow understand the phallic symbolism behind popping champagne. You might not approve of hyper masculine rappers pouring a bottle’s overflowing contents all over scantily-clad women, but at least you get where they’re coming from, right? However, this video, in a surprising twist, is filled w/ dudes jizzing champagne all over themselves and each other (In ‘tight wet t-shirts,’ as Dallas pointed out) As for the finer details of this flamboyant fuckery - 1.36 secs into the video, you can catch Jones authoritatively spilling his champagne, and his boy cupping his hands in a desperate attempt to lap up every last drop of the golden shower. It’s basically like a homoerotic take on cheerleaders getting crunk in a carwash.

This display coupled w/ Juelz’s penchant for cascading silk scarves is clearly a blatant retort to critics who continue to associate rap with homophobia. Prop 8 just got passed in California and this is probably Jones & Co.’s way of protesting it.

8) I was expecting a ton of celebrity cameos, but all I got was Jimmy, Juelz, Mike Epps, and Busta Rhymes. Ladies and Gentlemen, ‘Swagga Like Us- The Recession Edition'

I’m sure there is much that I’ve failed to appreciate, but that is all for now. Pick up the slack for me, won’t you please?

Thursday, November 6, 2008

Single, Please Mingle: Beyonce's 'Single Ladies'

Nobody’s talking about this song either, dudes. Are there such things as R&B Blogs? Coz maybe I’m looking in the wrong places. Suggestions are welcome. (I ain’t a music critic mon amis, I just think out loud often. I’m merely here to learn, and scream for joy every now and then) N-E-Ways. I ask about R&Blogs, coz I assume that they’d be creaming their collective crotch over tracks like this. I mean, rap blogs are usually all over joints where rappers spit over strange, off kilter beats. Not a surprise really. We’re all fiendin’ for that new-new.

Though I’ve never heard a Beyonce LP in its entirety, I’m familiar w/ her singles, and she’s been flirting with some pretty interesting choices lately. I guess I pay particular attention coz a) its beyonce and b) she doesn’t need to be doing this; she’s got the clout and the capital to be copping reliable, surefire pop hits. Mind you, she’s never shied away from taking the
safe route. But every now and then, Sasha spazzes and throws a curveball right at your testicles.

So, about this new joint. Bit of a ball breaker really. Sure, the vocal melody is a solid sing-along, but the beat? The beat’s all bloop-bleep-blorg-blurg - Atonal, cold and menacing. Interesting but totally unfriendly. You go against your gut instincts and try to befriend it, but it totally doesn’t submit to small talk. Not having any, no sir. You’re like, “Hey, nice day huh?” and it just shrugs and walks away. And you’re like “What a loser! *long pause* Why doesn’t it like me?”

And the video *wipes forehead* Whew…viewers, don’t forget your sunscreen. Forrealthough, the video’s in the same league as the beat – it’s on some she-is-legend, apocalyptic chorus line shit; Stepford Wives meets Dreamgirls meets B-girls in barren, desolate space. Did you notice the glittering gauntlet that Beyonce’s got on her right hand? Damn, is that how Jigga rolls these days? Forget about diamond engagement rings, platinum glove shackles are about to be all the rage next season. Seriously, talk about keeping your pimp hand strong. (Come to think of it, she probably used her iron fist to bitchslap Jay into writing this ballad) Oh-oh-o.

Anywaayys, maayyyne. It’s a good single. I don’t hear it often enough. At the very least, you need to put a ringtone on it.

Sunday, November 2, 2008

Single, Please Mingle: Q-Tip's Move

Q-Tip is hardly an obscure or overlooked artist, but I'm gonna present 'Move' as an underappreciated single. There's a plethora of reasons for doing so: Not too many people that I know are talking about it. I really haven't seen it on TV yet, despite its obvious pros. Its undoubtedly a great song and a club-ready jam, so there's no real excuse for shunning it. Oh and its produced by the legendary J Dilla. (Ugh, dear TTP or lupus or whatever disease it was that got Dilla killed: I hope you get violently raped during recess. I hope you get AIDs and that your best friends stop returning your phone calls. Hope that people switch their msn status to 'busy' or 'off to lunch' when you message them. Hope nobody even drops by your facebook page to say 'sup to your dying ass. Hope you die alone. I curse you with tons of dog poo on your tombstone. But I digress.)

But honestly though, the real reason I post this is coz Q-Tip's second verse starts with the following:

"Your dubious style may rock for right now
But in the long run, you really lost one
Jamaica, Queens, man - land of the tossed gun
Its never easy, police nah sees we"

Yowza. No matter how many times I slap rewind, those lines grab me. every. single. time. So much so that I don't like the Rik Cordero-directed video for the song - The
'Rock with you' throwback really doesn't do it for me coz I selfishly want the video to reflect the smack-you-silly-griminess of that second verse. Q-Tip performed the very same verse @ the BET Cypher this year, and I thought the basic, stark, black and white visual suited the verse much better.

Regardless, great single. Needs to mingle more with your playlists.

Off 'The Renaissance' - the long-awaited Q-Tip album that will most likely surpass your tired, low expectations. In stores November 4.