This action might not be possible to undo. Are you sure you want to continue?
You fucking hippy.
NOW 50% WITH M TYPOORE S!
ABORT ISSUE 5
S Y GALLER OOTING H T ER
ON LOITATI INKSP M SI E EAST TH ILE DE
HE POIN TO T
RO ALES F T
D AND UN 21
F IST PRO ABORT D TTING E CU GE S
ABORT Magazine Vol. 1 - Issue 4 Publisher/Editor-in-Chief Senior Editor Hip-Hop Editor Art Director/Layout Senior Writer Photo Editor Reviews Editor Staff Writers E.S. Day Grimm Culhane Dave “Corvid” McCallum Rheanna Fancypants Derek Leschasin E.S. Day / Grimm Culhane Grimm Culhane Grimm Culhane, E.S. Day Jimmy Lynch (Toronto), William “Moose” Roberts, Derrick Beckles (New York), Calder Fertig (Calgary), ninjoelspy., Andrew Johnston Russ Foxx Sarah Hamilton Sarah Hamilton, Chris Webber Toby Schuch, Jordana Hovis
Paul Michalowski, Jordana Meilluer
Owned and operated by
Abort Media Publishing Corporation (AMP Corp.) 1140 Comox St. Ste 203 Vancouver, BC Canada, V6E 1K5 778.330.7575 Fuck The Fax firstname.lastname@example.org www.abortmag.com www.abort.tv www.abortmagazine.com
General Info ABORT TV Advertising Marketing/Promotions Employment Opportunities Subscriptions/E-Newsletter
email@example.com firstname.lastname@example.org email@example.com firstname.lastname@example.org (We DO NOT give out your e-mail address)
Senior Photographer Staff Photographers
CD’s, DVD’s, Books, Art, Murals, Cash, Drugs, Garter Belts, Guns, Fur Coats, Trans-fatty foods and Cigarettes to be considered for review… email@example.com To submit words, art, video and filth firstname.lastname@example.org
(NOTE: ABORT Magazine/ABORT TV and its copyright holders, accept no responsibility for and will not necessarily respond to unsolicited art, manuscripts or any form of media including photo, video, audio and film footage. Such material will not be returned unless accompanied by a SASE) Tales From The Eastside™ contains pictures of people who have given consent to ABRT for use of their likeness and comments
Intern Cover Design and Concept
John Allan –www.johnallan.ca Mike Gilbert, FINK, Mike Boldt, Emmylou Benson, PaperMonster Kyle Wiltshire, Ben Carlin, Darryl Whetung, Mark Boucher Jamie Horlsey, Denis Maile, Rob Koch Alexandria Lee Mike Gilbert and E.S. Day email@example.com
ABORT Magazine is A Canadian Publication
1. We Don’t See God – Law & Order (MCA) 2. Kool Thing - Sonic Youth (DGC) 3. Sensations – Sweetback (Sony BMG) 4. Rockin' Is Ma' Business - The Four Horsemen (Def American) 5, If I Ever Fall in Love - Sanchez (VP) 6. Masta I.C. – Mic Geronimo (TVT) 7. Demagogue - Urban Dance Squad (Triple X) 8. I Against I - Mos Def & Massive Attack (Virgin) 9. Pocket Full of Fatcaps - Downset (PolyGram) 10. Second Bad Vibe - Autechre (Warp)
ts… view Reques List of Inter Our Monthly
eople who told us and the p
After his jaunty little “Rest” onstage at Bonnaroo, Pulitzer Prize winner Ornette Coleman and his mgmt felt it would be best to just tell ABORT magazine to pucker up, wrap our lips around his Instrument….and blow. Actually Ornette, we leave that to the RIAA, but thanks anyway.
ourselves. to go fuck
Our fave “Natural Born Thrilla” Actress turned musician –turned guest appearance/hostess on other bands tracks, Juliette Lewis decides she’s better off denying ABORT an interview and spend the extra time taking The Georgia Straight s Mike Usinger to a spelling bee for their first date.
Akrobatik – Absolute Value
As Mr. Lif told Abortmag personally, this is Hip Hop history in the making, so listen the fuck up, get lifted, and free your muthafuckin’ mind foo!!! Triple threat and Mr. Lifs favourite up and comer W.E. Jr., all so weeded on Backwoods over White Owls the smoke’s so thick you can’t see through it.
A to the K” feat. B-Real
Are you fucking serious? B-Real dropping “A to the muthafucking K” on the hook and Akrobatik sounding like a cross between Xzibit and KRS-ONE – East Coast hardcore is back by way of Boston!
Kindred” feat. Chuck D. and Brenna Gethers
Mista Chuck intros the track like an episode of Roots and Ak breaks down the roots of Black oppression like a professor and a poet.
Body movin’ Rocksteady Soul, classic Jamaican samples to get the party moving – “I got all night to smoke weed, but for now, I know what the people need…”
Front Steps Pt II (tough love)”
Unemployed in the hot summer, the lush soul sounds rise up from the streets just as the young block hustlers rise up to be legit block entrepreneurs, but only with some schoolin’.
Put Ya Stamp On It” feat. Talib Kweli
Skittery beats, stupid scratches, Ak and Kweli trading conversational back and forths with Kweli sounding ever more blazed and breath controlled.
Beast Mode” feat Mr Lif.
The Perceptionists’ party track starts with Akro acapella and bumps a Clipse style beat with Lif and Ak’s airtight flows designed to shake asses. feat. Bumpy Knuckles “Then you will be destroyed!”. Hardcore headz, middle fingers up!
Step It Up”
“Brute force rap” from the former fullback, over Phantom of the Opera organ samples - he weighs in at 250lbs so you better listen.
If We Can’t build” Ak B Nimble”
Rain” feat. Brenna Gethers
A contemplative, compassionate anthem for the downpressed featuring a lovely hook, something Rain City can relate to – “God is crying ‘cause we killin’ each other”.
And he sure as hell is quick. Over a ridiculous beatbox, Ak demonstrates skill so you can just “nod your head to the beat…”
Back Home to You”
Over lush guitar samples, Ak’s outro is a love song and a tribute to the woman behind the man. Intimate and humble, pretty much the opposite of the front most rappers adopt. …Oh and there’s a bonus track that’s fucking slamming too!!! This disc will be on my play list for weeks to come. Big up Akrobatik for keeping real Hip Hop alive! Sorry about the Patriots….
Be Prepared” feat. Little Brother
9th Wonder brings the street funk while the trio reflect on the rise from broke to bling and the seriousness of the business.
Right, left, right, left punches of East Coast Hardcore to the jaw, Ak’s got the freestyle reps and bangers for the heads while “nobody got shit to rap about”.
Black Hell Breaks Loose”
feat. Wille Evans Jr. and Therapy Cartoon soundtrack, kung fu samples, the Therapy
CKSna Meilleur LA
By Jordana Meille ur
Photo by Paul Michalowski
Photo by Paul Michalowski
OS DEF M
ul M Photo by Pa ichalowski
RYAN WOMBACHER Matt
Bleeding Through - Bassist
Photo: Paul Michalowski
From First To Last
Photo: Sarah Hamilton
Photo: Toby Schuch
What can a new member expect fro
m God’s Girls?
A Godsgirls.com membership will give a person access to our huge archive of photosets and videos. We have around 200 models who are selected for their good looks, their wild personalities, their intelligence and their willingness/ability to be a part of our thriving online community. Your membership fee supports the models at their photo shoots but the friendships formed on our site are free. That sounds sooo cheesy, but sometimes when I think about our little community I feel pretty warm and fuzzy.
How are God’s Girls selected
? Is there specific criterion?
Girls from all over the world submit photographers and fill out a brief questionnaire that allows us to get a rough feel for their personality and wit. From there we begin a process that is meant to weed out any major illiterates, dummies or girls who aren't quite as pretty as our members have come to expect. Only the brightest, most beautiful girls get the coveted title of Gods Girls.
Why the name God
s Girls? Some relig
Yes. We are all drinking the Kool-aid and waiting for the spaceship to take us to Heaven. Beepboopboop.
How does your site compare to other "alt-porn" sites?
Of course people will always make comparisons of Godsgirls to other sites but from my experience the people who do so have never been members of Gods Girls. The people who join can see the big difference for themselves. Our models experience the difference on a daily basis. We are not the same as any other site.
is What exactly
I don't know. Everyone has a different idea of what alt-porn is or should be. Gods Girls is an alt-porn site. It is alternative because it focuses on a kind of girl who you normally wouldn't see in adult oriented content and also because our site focuses on community and not solely on tits (though tits are rampantly present) and also on the models personalities.
The Gods Girls collective is going on 2 years soon, how much has change d for your viewers/readers and yourselve s or Gods Girls as a whole?
I couldn't tell you how our members have changed over the last two years because it is different for everyone. Our site has stayed pretty true to it's roots. We are all about tons of updates, quality photosets, hot girls and a friendly community.
d the “social us understan irls. Is Help ct of Gods G orking” aspe ent netw inal entrapm in fact sublim ? this not g stupid men educe” youn to “E-S
Well, the vast majority of our members aren't stupid. Seduction is a two way street. Maybe we are giving these 'young stupid men' as you called them the opportunity to e-seduce the Gods Girl of their choice or at least a fair try at it. I don't think that the air of cynicism is quite as thick on our community as your thought might imply. It is a thriving community that is a lot of fun. I'd also like to note that our site has about an equal male to female ratio as far as members go. A lot of people join and stay for the community and the like-minded people that they will have easy access to.
Will there be more Gods Girls app earances involving the music industry and/or charita ble work?
The future could hold any number of things for us. We are often involved with concerts, event promotion and with music videos. We do have a charity project in the works that will benefit breast cancer research and people who have been effected by breast cancer.
What can we expect from Gods Gir
We have been involved in a lot of exciting TV stuff with Vlaze.com (formerly Musicplustv.com) in the past that we really enjoyed. We also did some appearances with Dave Navarro on his internet TV show amongst others. We are looking forward to breaking into other people's studios in the future and blessing them with our unruly presence.
Any tours planned?
No. We don't have any plans to organize a tour. Canada already does see many Gods Girls. We have a ton of models in Canada and a ton of members from Canada. You will probably pass a Gods Girl in the street sometime soon.
RIP M.H.M. 5/5/27 – 6/23/07
This page: photos by
ALES FROM TH
HELL ON WHEELS
This page: photos by
ALES FROM THE EASTSID
À LA CAR
ky Homosapien Del The Fun
joints laz, not to mention the solo ound with Deltron and Goril After breaking gr sapien has done it again. stermind Del The Funky Homo Hieroglyphics ma s ding out the comics, Del ha itive Jux, tour, and still poun A new album via Defin ics and beats that to this day, other wave of awe-inspiring lyr indeed set the tone for an with. are still a force to be reckoned the “Del Hotel” kicked um sat down with the man at ABORT’s Dave”Corvid McCall g breakdown of Del in ‘08 t and listened to an interestin up his fee
Corvid: Corvid here with Del The Funky Homosapien. DEL: Mm hmmm CORVID: How’s it going today sir? how’s it feel to be in Vancity man? DEL: Chilling man, we just got here man. CORVID: Well, were glad you made it man. So well let’s see, what’s new with Del man? Last time you were here was like five years ago. I don’t know if you've done any shows here since then? DEL: Naw, I haven't been out here in a million man. Been working on the new album “11th Hour” you know, that’s primarily what I’ve been working on. I have a couple other projects I’ve been DEL: Oh you mean what kind of courses? Oh you know just basic music theory CORVID: Yeah. DEL: Just so I know the A, B, C’s of what I was doing you know cuz it was all by ear. working on too. Worked on some stuff with APLUS & AAGEE, both of them is called “Compound 7” and they did an EP for me called LED which is DEL spelt backwards. That’s a seven song EP so that’s finished, did “11th Hour” and been studding music theory for the past seven years. CORVID: Nice, nice what have you been working on?
CORVID: Yeah, yeah. So you did that on your own? DEL: Yeah I did it on my own. I just bought ever single music book I could find you know? Try to just absorb any new information, try to avoid any little, you know, rudimentary or whatever that was given to you at school and stuff. I wanted to avoid all that. I wanted to get to the core of what is it really about? I felt like it was obscure by like teachers and stuff. CORVID: Yeah.
as bad as it used to be. Before, I couldn’t even use a Mac for music at all. Now you know I’m a little bit more comfortable with it, as more products have been crossed over to the Mac? That’s what I use primarily though is the computer. CORVID: So “11th Hour,” that is coming out soon, is it scheduled for release right now? I think I read October something like that? DEL: Yeah probably something like that. CORVID: Probably yeah.
DEL: Which it was, so I’m glad I just did it myself. I learned a lot with in like a few years. CORVID: So does that mean you’re doing a lot of production on your new albums and such this year? DEL: Oh yeah, I did a lot of the production anyway before, but I think it’s a lot better now. I wanted it definitely to be more palatable to the average person’s ear. I didn’t want so much discord you know, I wanted things to be little smoother, so to do that I had to learn a lot of music theory courses, but it’s cool. CORVID: So what kind of gear are you working on? DEL: Truthfully I use the PC for music primarily, but I got the Mac too you know cause I don’t need so much stuff with the Mac to get it to operate, you know what I’m saying? CORVID: Yeah DEL: You know with the PC I need all these outside peripherals to get it to work. With a Mac I can just plug it in a speaker… I’m cool, you know what I’m saying? The only thing about the Mac is that it doesn’t have as much, not even nearly as much software as the PC has. I feel kind of like a little bit of a pinch as far as what I could do with it, but there’s more software coming out for it now so it’s not
DEL: It’s done, now it’s just a matter of finding the avenue that will maximize the potential of that release. Now there’s a few things I’ve been working on that I don’t wanna speak on too much. CORVID: Naw man, keep it a secret, keep it a surprise man. The world’s definitely waiting for more Del. Now I gotta ask this because everyone wanted me to ask this, Gorillaz, any chance of that happening again? DEL: Actually, to tell you the truth, me being on the first Gorillaz was like a once in a life time thing in the first place. I was never written into Gorillaz. The way that that happened was that me and Dan the Automator were finishing up the Deltron project and he happened to be finishing up Gorillaz at the same time. He had been telling me about it while working on Deltron. So he had the song already, “Clint Eastwood.” He already had the song and had a rapper on it, but he didn’t particularly dig that, you know what I’m saying? CORVID: Yeah DEL: Basically he knew I could write a rap in like five minutes or so and it'd be good, so he was like “you think you could do something with this,” and actually I didn’t even wanna do it cuz I was so
burnt out and tired from Deltron. It was so late at night, I felt like saying “naw man, just take me home dude, I just wanna go to sleep,” but he was like “man you know you could do this you know,” trying to convince me so I was like “alright I’ll do it.” And that’s how that happened. It was never a thing where like they came at me and were like “Del man, we need you for this album.” Automator just needed something that worked there right then and there, I happened to be there, knew I could do it so that’s how it worked. So as far as another Gorillaz, if they come hollered at me, but they never came hollered at me in the first place so it was a chance I’m getting, so that’s how that worked out. CORVID: That’s cool too because through that chance you kinda crossed over and there’s a lot of people who know Del, and there’s not even a lot of real hip hop heads who know Gorillaz. DEL: Lemmie just say that not that I have anything against the Gorillaz, the artists that drew the art for Gorillaz he also used to draw Tank Girl back in the day and that’s one of my favorite comic books from back in the day, so believe me I don’t have anything against Gorillaz. I thought off the bat the art was tight, and just to see that artist get bigger like that cuz he was always on the fringe you know? They even had the Tank Girl movie, but they didn’t freak it like they needed to you know what I’m saying? He's dope man, so I wasn’t mad at that at all you know? I was geeking off the pictures from when Automator was showing them. He gave me a book of the Gorillaz when like they first started doing it, he got me a book of all the art. He's like “check this out, you think this is cool?” and I was like “this is JAY!” He’s like “oh yeah yeah” you know how Automater is, "oh yeah, yeah we’re working with him too?” CORVID: (Laughter) DEL: That’s how Automater would talk, like it was just a matter of fact. "Yeah I was eating dinner with Russell Simmons over there, he’s a funny guy man," you know what I’m saying? He's just a wheeler and dealer. CORVID: (laughter) DEL: But shit man, I just wanted to say that though cuz I didn’t want to get misconstrued or nothing man. I feel Gorillaz, that’s all good, but they didn’t come at me so it’s not like it’s my say whether or not I’m gonna be on another one. I wouldn't mind, as long as they didn't take too much out of me. They asked me to go on the road with them for the first Gorillaz and I was like I can’t do that, there cartoon characters. How can I go on the road for something that isn't real, that’s not there? They only exist on the record. They were like "well, um, we know that, but we’re trying to make it possible" and I’m like, “naw, I can’t do that.” Plus I didn’t want my name to get too associated with Gorillaz, like that’s what I do, cuz that’s not the type of music I do. No disrespect, its tight, but that ain't the type of music that I do, that’s not particularly the type of music that I sit around listening to. I
didn’t want it to get misconstrued from people that peeped me on that and be like thinking like that’s what Del do. So I did wanna to make a separation there, but Gorillaz is cool, but I don’t want people to expect that when they get a Del album and then be disappointed next time. CORVID: Cool, with Dan the Automator, doing any work with him lately? DEL: Actually the new Deltron album is done. Musically its done. CORVID: No shit? DEL: That’s musically its done, you know what I’m saying? I did like a couple songs. I still need to write the lyrics for the songs, but I need to be in the right frame of mind to do it. Basically, when I wrote the first one I was young and had a lot of free time on my hands, which ain't the case no more. Like every moment of my life is taken up trying to handle some kinda business of some sort. To get back into that childish frame of mind, or youthful frame of mind I should say, is hard, you know what I’m saying? But we'll see if I can do it or not. I mean I got a whole script for the whole album you know so thematically what I wanted to be, so I just gotta sit down and write, it you know? So I wrote like two or three songs already, course there’s like sixteen, so you know once I get into the mode it won’t take me longer than two or three weeks to write it It don’t take me long to write, I just have to be in that zone to do it you know, and that album in particular for me it feels like it needs to have more substance cause the first one didn’t have much substance as far as I was concerned. CORVID: Really? DEL: Not really.
I basically was freestyling with a
lot of big words, but I’m still just about
MC’in. I still had some songs that had some
kind of topic to it, but for the most part I was just going off.
one wanted to sit and peep it at a park and be like ok, it look like this on the surface, but if you really listen to it he's not really talking about nothing. I didn’t want nobody to do it, cuz people tried to do this with the first Deltron. They’re like its cool and stuff and there trying to look at it
And this album, I wanted it to have more substance, so if some-
like it’s a novel or something, but it ain’t though. He’s really just freestyling, and using a lot of futuristic terminology, but that’s pretty much it. Its great or whatever, but he ain’t saying that much. Don’t get it twisted like its more, that what it is and I had to bill that like it ain’t, cause I didn’t expect it to be, but now it’s out
"man you did so much for hip hop man, you’re like a new frontier" and I’m like “ok man that’s cool, I can dig that.” But that’s kinda' why I wanna take it to a new level so it'll really be there, but they trippin' off the other one.
DEL: Yeah, they praise Deltron like I want it to really be there cuz after a while when they really start listening to it a little bit more it’s not gonna be as tight as they thought it was. So I’m like the next one, lemmie really put something in there a little bit more so seven or eight years after they listen back to it, it'll be like they remembered it was. You know when you listen to some stuff in the eighties and then listen to it now and it seemed like it was so dope back then and now it’s like I remember it was dope back then, but shit’s grown so much since then. So I wanna grow you know what I’m saying? CORVID: That’s cool man, it’s cool that you feel the responsibility to step it up too. A lot of artists kind of just maintain. DEL: Yeah well I feel like it’s about me and whoever is listening to it to, you know cuz we can’t function with people getting into it you know.
there you know? I just feel like the next one needs to be more substantial since now it’s an ongoing thing. Ok, I need to make it more now. You know I just feel like it’s a responsibly for the people listening, for that particular project it takes time. Other stuff it doesn’t take that much time, it doesn’t take that much research for one. The first Deltron took a lot of research. I was reading all kinds of scientific magazines like Omni and such, watching a lot of anime while reading a lot of manga or comic books and stuff, taking notes. All that took a lot of time, though it didn’t seem like it took a lot of time, it took hours but you know that’s what I was into. I don’t have time for that now, like reading. Hopefully I have some time to read something’s every now and then, but I can’t read things like I used to. Its unfortunate. I do most of my reading online on the computer. CORVID: You know that’s where that cross over comes in. A lot of people that don’t even usually listen to hip hop they know Deltron.
Del The Funky Homosapien will appear the Def Jux Showcase during SXSW Conference alsongide EL-P , Dizzee Rascal and more His New Album “The 11th Hour” Is In Stores March 11, 2008 via Def Jux
My name is
I´m 24 years old. My specialty is pinups, New School Tattoo Art and Japanese Tattoo Art.
I live/work in a small town called Norrköping, in Sweden.
No date set yet, but sometime this autumn I will have an exhibition in Norrköping, Sweden, at the Scandia Theatre. More info about the exhibition will come up on bettieboner.deviantart.com
Well I started drawing from that day I could hold a pencil in my hands. In the beginning, when I was around 13 years old I drew mostly nature art, like birds and landscapes. I got into the tattoo art when I was about 16. But the “flash” (if I even can call it flash) I did back then wasn’t really good. I tried running around at different tattoo conventions and sell my stuff, not with any bigger success though. When I was 18, I dropped out of school and started an apprenticeship at a tattoo parlor in Linköping, Sweden. I lasted there for almost 2 years, but couldn’t still decide what to do with my life/talent. So I quit my apprenticeship and started working instead. Still today, I´m only a tattoo flash artist, not a tattoo artist which still is my dream to become one day I´m an artist with big ambitions, maybe to big, and that makes me a bit clueless about my future. To many ideas turns into nothing. Still the tattoo art amazes me, and to one day make my art more alive one someones skin is my biggest dream. Till then I’ll continue to make other peoples dreams come true, by drawing them the art they either want in their skin or just to enjoy on their walls.
photos by Chris Webber
brought to you by
WORK A CRO
and keep them
what it takes to
Whi tey w/ Jones Bones and New World on Fire
Saturday December 1st, 2007 Pub 340, Vancouver, BC A good portion of Chilliwack showed up in Vancouver Saturday for a night of musical madness at Pub 340, and why not? If the smell of agriculture weren’t reason enough to scare you out of “The Green Heart of the Province,” catching sets by Jones Bones, New World On Fire and Whitey just might do the trick. East Van natives Jones Bones lead off the night with a rapid fire set of BC’s “other” finest export, good tunes. Their chunky, metal laden mayhem could give The Dead Boys a run for their money, if in fact The Dead Boys weren’t already dead (well… Stiv Bators anyway). Their set was reminiscent of early incarnations of punk and reminded me why I still love the genre. Bravo! Newly reformed and back in action (thank fucking GOD!), New World On Fire got the place jumping with a raucous set of in-your-face Gaelic folk tunes. Nah, I’m just fucking with you, New World On Fire are heavy duty all the way baby! Limited practise time before the gig didn’t affect the power and presence these guys brought to their set one bit. After a 14 month hiatus I’d be wanting to kick some serious ass too! Check them out when you can, you won’t regret it.
ZY INTO A FREN ere. th
Finally the horned devils of mighty Whitey were up. With enough people on stage to start a small country, the members of Whitey and their punk/ska/rock stylings set out to entertain and conquer and that’s exactly what they did. Well crafted, infectious tunes kept the audience moving and grooving, something obviously familiar to the congregated crowd of cheering Chilliwackians. By trading off lead vocals, equally talented Colin and Joe kept things fresh, while the horn section of Cole, Mike and Bryce (who seconds on keyboards) truly bring this band alive without overpowering the other members. Kudos go to drummer Paul as well, as solid a stick handler as any I’ve seen this season. It became quite obvious as the night wound down, Whitey knows exactly what it takes to work a crowd into a frenzy and keep them there. If you are in the mood to drink and groove than it doesn’t get much better than this! Scads of Chilliwackites can’t be wrong. Big thanks to Pub 340 for bringing this one together. By Grimm Culhane photo: Sarah Hamilton
to see him
IT WAS A
E DAD H
le in his th
out on sta
Next up was the duet “The Conversation”, which featured Ky-Mani trading lines (and moves) with one of his gorgeous backup singers on the topic of love amidst the struggle. The band next launched into the unmistakable opening bars of “No Woman No Cry” and it was seriously a moving moment to see and hear Bob’s son, the spitting image and voice of his father, tear into this classic. Some of the motionless chumps in the audience even seemed to register some appreciation for this rare moment. After some of his R+B flavoured material, Ky-Mani ended the short (35 min.) set with “I Shot The Sheriff”, and again it was a fucking trip to see him all wailing out on stage, dreads flying, with that crazy rattle in his throat just like dad had. Did these lifeless fucking corpses in the front row care one bit, or did they just think he was covering an Eric Clapton song? Morons. Anyway, even if greatness is not recognized it’s still greatness, and what does Ky-Mani care? He’s famous and awesome already. Oh, and as for Van Halen, we weren’t allowed to stay for their show even with our proper credentials, so fuck those toothless old booze hags who can’t remember the lyrics to their own songs anyway. By Dave “Corvid” McCallum photo: Sarah Hamilton
Ky-Mani Marley w/Van H
Wednesday, December 5, 2007 General Motors Place - Vancouver, BC
After chilling on the bus and blazing jah herb with Ky-Mani, the goons at GM place still wouldn’t let us in without an escort. But whatever, moments later we were backstage with the band watching the giant Van Halen balloons inflate. Ky-Mani and his killer band kicked it off with a rippin’ version of “Roots, Rock, Reggae”, followed by the street anthem “The March” from his latest album “Radio”. Ky-Mani brought the groove right down so that the audience could hear the intense and brilliant lyrics, but judging from the faces of the crowd much of its significance was lost on these clueless middle-age motherfuckers (Hey you described half the staff - Ed)
Finally, after only two years (and eight months) of waiting, it was, in lead singer Naoko’s words, rock time! Backing their latest North American album ‘Genki Shock’ (and their new Japanese release ‘Fun! Fun! Fun!’), Shonen Knife climbed up on stage and worked their magic. Infectious and always fun, in matching outfits with big, big smiles, Shonen Knife played some of the tightest, fastest and grooviest songs this side of Osaka. Tunes like Konnichiwa, Fruits & Vegetables and the always favourite Twist Barbie got those in attendance smiling and dancing and singing along. One encore was certainly not enough, but then how does one ever get their fill of this much fun? After their set (and armed with impeccable manners) they took the time to greet the audience and signed a whole mess of autographs. Still a band of the people. Definitely not just a novelty act, the three talented women of Shonen Knife have been able to do something other female bands (or just plain “bands” for that matter) haven’t been able to do in the predominately male music scene, last. 25 years and counting with no end in sight, Shonen Knife is not only infectious, cute and fun, but truly inspiring as well. Happy fun time indeed!
By Grimm Culhane
Photo: Sarah Hamilton
Thursday, December 13, 2007 Richard’s on Richards - Vancouver
w/ The Juliet Da and Verona G gger rove
Happy fun time at Richard’s last Thursday as Shonen Knife returned to town after a two year (and eight month) hiatus. Practicing their style of fast, garage grooviness with all-girl charm, Shonen Knife have been doing what they do for 25 years now and show absolutely no signs of slowing down. Bringing with them The Juliet Dagger and Verona Grove, it was a high energy night of Fun! Fun! Fun! Show starting Verona Grove poured out some edgy, emo-rific tunes. All three members were into their set even though the response wasn’t huge. Seems they were saving it up for Shonen Knife. The Juliet Dagger kicked things into upper gear ratios next with a set of solid hard-rock. Lead singer/guitarist Erin Roberts (with a rotating cast of characters) lifts this band well above the average with her dominant voice and catchy song arrangements. Its nice to hear rock and roll trimmed of its fat and kicked out so well. I’d keep an eye out for this band, Erin has that star quality for sure.
Ne c ro
Saturday, Jan 19, 2008 The Underground, Calgary, AB
w/ Danny Diablo, Psycho Realm and Riviera Regime
Not letting brutal winter conditions deter him, Necro hit Calgary’s Underground on January 19 to support his latest Psycho+Logical/KOCH release, “Death Rap.” The hype for the sold-out show was palpable, with fans lining up outside of the venue hours in advance despite the night’s sub-zero temperatures. When the doors finally did open, the venue was flooded with hardcore fans, some
even brandishing rubber skull masks in the vein of the cover art for Necro’s “The Pre-Fix for Death.” Punks, goths, preps, jocks, Pitchfork readers, hip-hop fans and metalheads filled up the small club, and the party was on. The first act of the night was Canada’s own Riviera Regime (part of Necro’s Psycho+Logical label), who had the entire club going nuts before they even started their first track. The Regime were followed by New York’s Danny Diablo, self-proclaimed international hardcore superstar and a pioneer in the thugcore movement, promoting his latest release “Thugcore 4 Life.” Mixing hardcore with hip-hop, Diablo and Ceekay (The Shotblockers) along with DJ Stress nearly tore down the stage, literally. Yanking violently on a ceiling-mounted camera, DD’s face was projected across every screen in the club as he spit out his personal brand of gravel-filtered venom into the mic. Diablo’s onstage demeanor was more Hatebreed than hip-hop, which is fitting due to his numerous collaborations with Hatebreed’s Jamey Jasta. Next up were L.A’s Psycho Realm, launching a three-M.C. attack over heavy, old-school breaks. Echoing groups like Cypress Hill, Psycho Realm’s set was taut, yet laid back, with tracks like “Showdown” locking the crowd up front into place. But even though their tracks weren’t necessarily as heavy as the previous act, the members of Psycho Realm put a ton of energy into their set, and the crowd seemed to feed off of it. Finally, with the now sauna-like club taking on a morgue-like appearance as cold air flowed in from an open door, Necro took the stage with Klee from Riviera Regime on backing vocals. With the crowd’s breath visible through their cheers, Necro delivered a killer, genre-slashing set. With tracks spanning a number of his albums, from Death Rap and The Pre-Fix for Death to The Sexorcist, Necro had the crowd moshing one second and dry humping in the club’s booths the next. The newer songs kept the crowd just as engaged as his older tracks, with his razor-sharp, hyper-speed rapping never missing a beat throughout the entire set. After the show, all four acts hit the floor of the club and mingled with the crowd, but it wasn’t long until last call hit and the venue finally emptied out. And with that it was over, with nothing but a floor full of broken glass and bloody paper towels left as a reminder. By Calder Fertig Photo: Mike Boldt
w/ Broadway Calls and JAWS
Wednesday, January 16th, 2008 La Casa Del Artista - Vancouver, BC The show took place at the Mexican themed La Casa Del Artista. With sombreros and trumpets on the wall, I was fully prepared for a mariachi band to take the stage whilst throwing tacos at the crowd. Instead of this madness, Slingshot hit the stage. This young bunch of Surrey punks started the night off right with a great brand of fast skater punk, accompanied with some hilarious banter between songs. Noice. Next up, Jaws. I found myself wondering if they had named their band after a shark or the Mongoloid with the giant chompers from that James Bond movie? All this was lost on their first note. Jaws were a punishing metal assault that let up for no one. In between songs the singer told the crowd, “if I push you, just punch me in the face” and the band all agreed. There was pushing, but nobody took him up on his offer. Broadway Calls. What does it call for? Apparently, some high energy pop punk. These guys bounced around the stage offering up some great catchy tunes, while the kids sang along smiling ear to ear. Once they started playing they barely stopped for a drink. Throw in a Kid Dynamite cover and I’m happy. My only beef was that someone near by kept rippin’ ass. Just because you’re going to spend your night in a crowded Mexican flavoured room doesn’t mean you have to have a Mexican flavoured dinner before you arrive. (cont)
I was impressed with Ruiner before they even started playing. This was because one of their guitarists wore the best cutoff jean shorts I have ever seen (did you get his number? –Ed). I became doubly impressed once they started playing. It was fast hardcore punk with an emphasis on the hardcore. The singer was a red headed, red faced, ball of fury. He would fly back and forth on the stage like a rabid dog while chewing on his mic chord. Their songs were epic, and I found myself purchasing a CD because of this. I love a show where they don’t mic the amps and just crank ‘em up to ten. This was a perfect room for that with its size and intimate feel. The lineup was versatile if anything, with something for everyone. Next show they ought to sell bean burritos and turn it into a real fart fest. By Denis Maile Photo: Jordana Hovis
survived, but Lif’s world and perspective have been forever changed. A new intensity is apparent in the handful of new tracks he blessed us with, and in the overall energy of his magnetic performance. DJ Therapy warmed us up for the arrival of the dreaded one, and when he took the stage like a mutant sorcerer to drop gems from “I Phantom”, the crowd was immediately hypnotized. Fellow Perceptionist Akrobatik soon joined Lif to kick airtight back and forth verses of life, live, politics and apocalypse until the air was thick with lyrics and sub bass. Ak’s flow is amazingly quick and fluent, with an Old School growl and the chest to belt it out, and the interplay between him and Lif is clearly influenced by their days playing college football together. Therapy himself (“The Triple Threat”) kicked some stellar flows and with three MC’s rocking it the crowd was fully hyped. The highest point for me was “Brothaz” off “Mo’Mega” – “brothaz it’s time to bust – SHOTS!!!” – an incendiary message to look outward at the source of oppression in an age of violence turned inward. I’m not sure how much of Lif and Ak’s Molotov cocktail of lyrics really resonated with the downtown audience, but the simple fact is that this shit rocks hard, and you can’t help but feel it. Real Hip Hop with all the lyrics and without the fashion, the Perceptionists are once again on top of my list of artists who will carry Hip Hop into a future worth living.
Tuesday, Jan 22/08 Richard’s on Richard’s, Vancouver, BC Just signed to Classified’s Halflife Records, Toronto’s D.O. has the skills and material to make a great name for himself in Canada and beyond. The holder of the Guinness Book of World Records title for world’s longest freestyle (at 8 hours 45 min.!!!) spits hype flows reminiscent of Ghostface, and freestyled on topics delivered by the audience. Even with the audience growing impatient for Mr. Lif, D.O. stood tall and gave a thorough demonstration of his powers as an MC. Since Lif’s last appearance at Sonar supporting the Perceptionist’s “Black Dialogue” album a couple years back, he released the blistering “Mo’Mega”, - and finished the tour with his bus rolling over a forty foot embankment and bursting into flames! Miraculously all
w/ The Perceptionists
Thanks to Sean and Spectrum Events. By Dave “Corvid ” McCallum Photo: Chris Webber
Joe Keithley & his Band of Rebels
Thursday, Dec. 6, 2007 Plaza Club - Vancouver
It’s hard to believe that a man referred to more often than not as “Shithead” became one of Vancouver’s musical, cultural and political icons, and is still going strong, but there it is. Joe “Shithead” Keithley might not often be discussed during a family dinner, like David Suzuki, but he’s still one of the city’s most recognizable names. Keithley has fronted legendary punk band D.O.A. for many years now, so it was probably inevitable that he would record a solo album, which came out this fall, self-titled “Joe Shithead Keithley and His Band of Rebels”. Keithley enlisted the help of several musicians from outside DOA to record the album, which is a bit of a departure from his other band’s punk rock styling’s; incorporating elements of funk, reggae and straight up rock and roll. On December 6, at the Plaza Club, the band held the official release party for the album, and the event was also a benefit for marijuana activist Marc Emery, who is facing serious legal problems and extradition to the United States for selling marijuana seeds online. Before Keithley and his band came on stage, Emery gave a short speech about his plight, and Aging Youth Gang played a lengthy opening set of snotty, mediocre punk rock, including one of the worst Buzzcocks covers I’ve ever heard, as well as a fairly decent Clash cover. The evening began with a fairly sparse attendance, but the Plaza began to fill up towards the end of Aging Youth Gang’s set. The audience was a mix of younger people and middle agers who probably knew DOA from their youth. It’s not common to see that kind of age mixing at such an event, and it was nice to see. Thanks to Emery’s presence, it was also nice to hear some kind of political issue mentioned at a punk rock show – something I haven’t experienced much in the last few years. When Keithley and his entourage hit the stage, they played a long and energetic set of material from the new release, including more straight-up songs like “When Power Came to Canada” as well as danceable tunes such as “Armageddon Time”. It wasn’t D.O.A.-style stuff, but Keithley’s energy on stage showed that the old master can still keep his audience enthralled. The backing band was a spectacle as well, sometimes consisting of seven or eight other musicians, including keyboards, back-up vocals, saxophone and trumpet, and two drummers. The only flaw was that it was very difficult to hear the horns. After finishing their set with a cover of “Born to Be Wild”, the band returned on stage for an encore featuring DOA material, including “Marijuana Motherfucker” and “The
Enemy”, and Randy Rampage and Wimpy Roy, former DOA members, even joined in with the band. The encore was definitely the highlight of the night, and a reason to be thankful not all rockers meet an early demise through drugs/drivebys/suicide etc. Keithley looked just the way you would want to see a musician: like he was having fun. Let’s hope he keeps on having fun making music, because he sure as hell is enjoyable on stage.
By By Derek Leschasin Photo: Toby Schuch/Rize Photo
Friday, Dec.14, 2007 Croation Cultural Centre - Vancouver
w/ Sonic Syndicate and Gross Misconduct
Fist fights, Viking lore, and no mercy. This basically summed up Friday evening at the Croatian Cultural Centre in terms of both performances and attendees. A sweaty, bloody and savage capacity crowd pulled many punches as the music and atmosphere fueled rowdy mosh-pits and fist fights to break out at any given moment and any given place (although sometimes difficult to tell the two apart). Getting things started off (late addition) were local thrash juggernauts Gross Misconduct. The Vancouver natives’ first show in front of such a sizable audience had them greeted warmly with supportive devil horns and lighters (cont)
being raised appropriately. Unleashing technical thrash in the vein of Slayer, At The Gates and Mastodon to a receptive crowd must of been a great feeling and surely a sign of things to come. Attempting to satisfy anyone’s need for hooks was Swedish sextet Sonic Syndicate. Offering metal heavily favouring the melodic styling of brethren Soilwork and In Flames (even some of Bleeding Through’s more melodic offerings, as death metal organs were prevalent), with a
twin guitar and dual vocal approach, these Scandinavians were not greeted so warmly. Being that the harsh vocals
were used more to accompany and emphasize the prominent melodies, a noticeable margin of the audience displayed their impatience with boos and tossing objects (mostly water bottles) at the band. Much to the band’s dismay, as drenched vocalist promptly flipped the culprits. Regardless, Sonic Syndicate maintained composure and pressed on through their set. Given the right setting and crowd they are such to find their fans in North America; unfortunately this Vancouver crowd was not the right target. To the sheer joy of the fans, whose chorus of chants filled the gap between sets, emerged Amon Amarth in true epic fashion, unleashing their brutal Viking-metal to the masses. Delivering fully, both on a musical and theatrical front, these bearded warriors hit the stage donning medieval garb and spouting tales of early Scandinavia. Spanning tracks highlighting much of their career, they unleashed “Death In Fire”, “Fate Of Norns”, “Down The Slopes of Death”, “Thousand Years of Oppression” and “The Sound of Eight Hooves”. Never missing a beat, as even segues were played perfectly, lead vocalist Johan Hegg set up each tale in over-the-top fashion. With set-pieces including a line of Vikings filling the back of the stage, emblem-bearing shields hanging as bookmarks from the ceiling, and Viking-horn shaped goblets toasted to the crowd, Amon Amarth brought metal and theatrics in equally satisfying measure. (Note: Amon Amarth also enjoyed receiving their first Gold DVD presented to them on stage by Metal Blade Records - Ed) By Andrew Johnston Photo: Paul Michalowski
w/ Bison and ing Youth Gang Friday January 18, 2007 Ag
Commodore Ballroom - Vancouver Everything old is… well, still pretty old, but on Friday night at the Commodore nobody gave a shit, the Circle Jerks were in town! Secretly disguised as their own road crew, the boys dragged their gear all the way from Hermosa Beach to show us Vancouverites just what one of the most preeminent punk bands from the early days of the L.A. scene can still do, rock fucking hard! They players may have aged some, but judging from the huge age variance in the crowd gathered, their music is as relevant as ever. Not bad for a bunch of guys who’ve been playing some of the most influential punk music since 1979. Aging Youth Gang (who seem to be “aging” gracefully as well) lit the fuse on this night’s powder keg with some abrasive, no non-sense “fuck-you-if-you-don’t-like” punk. With feet firmly set in old school sensibilities, Sandy Beach, Zero Tolerance, El Furioso and Boom Boom (the drummer, of course) really know how to tear a strip off a crowd and leave them wanting more. I wonder if Sandy still has that lumpy couch I used to crash on when my old band played in town? And hey, El Furioso, get a bastard you haircut! The big surprise of the night was local band Bison filling out the bill. Having not seen Bison live before I can now faithfully submit that these guys kick supreme ass! Stoner metal (the likes of which you’ve never heard before) filled the senses of those in attendance with a calm, serene feeling, a feeling that only a bout of violent moshing could remedy. Monster anthems with some of the best solo work this side of the border; Bison has a
knack for finding a groove and turning it into a war trumpeting battle cry no one can resist. Finally, to monstrous cheers, Circle Jerks sauntered out on stage. You really have to give it to a band that’ve been doing the same thing for nearly 30 years and are able to keep it as fresh as day one. The energy and force exuded by lead singer Keith Morris, guitarist Greg Hetson, bass player Zander Schloss (remember him from “Repo Man”?) and drummer Kevin Fitzgerald puts most bands half their age to shame, shame, shame. With songs like “Back Against the Wall,” “Leave Me Alone” and “I Wanna Destroy You” its not hard to see just why they remain as relevant now as they were “back in the day.” It’s so great to live in a city where bands like the Circle Jerks can come and play and get the recognition they fully deserve. Let’s hope they return soon. By Grimm Culhane Photo: Jordana Meilleur
“This is Hell” did a great job of building up the energy in the club, seeming to suffer not at all from being in the traditionally unenviable position of opening for the headliners. Too often it can be difficult to hear an opening band above the roar of conversation from a disinterested audience, but “This is Hell” made their presence felt through their set of fast, intense hardcore. An opening act is still an opening act, however, so “Cancer Bats” picked up on the energy in the room and doubled it. It’s no surprise that this band has been receiving a lot of attention lately, especially if all their performances are this energetic. Drawing from their 2006 release “Birthing the Giant” as well as unreleased tracks from their upcoming album “Hell Destroyer”, frontman Liam Cormier lept around the stage with the crowd at his complete control, and the band solidly behind him. Judging by the new songs, “Hell Destroyer” is going to kick everyone’s ass at least as much as the band’s previous release has done. With the Canadians having set the mood, the stage was ready for a band that has far more buzz floating around it than virtually anyone deserves. Except for a spot on last year’s Warped Tour, Gallows had never played Vancouver before and it was clear that this was the band most were at the venue to see. So it was a little odd to see the band looking subdued throughout their first two songs, and frontman Frank Carter appearing exhausted or ill and seeming to lean on his mic stand for support. Carter wouldn’t let the show continue without explaining that he had seriously injured his back at the band’s appearance in L.A. Admitting he hadn’t been to a doctor “because I’m a pussy”, Carter said the band had needed to make the choice of cancelling the tour or continuing on in an inferior mode. Maybe circumstances like this can really expose a band’s mettle, because despite the fact that Carter appeared to be in genuine pain and essentially confined to the area around his mic stand, Gallows soldiered on and seemed to pick up on the energy in the room, turning what at first looked to be a disappointing, mediocre set into something that at least hinted at the chaos this band could potentially create on stage. While fans had to be somewhat disappointed, there was definitely no shortage of support in the room and Carter and the rest of the band have to be respected for sticking to the tour and playing their music, even though there must have been concerns all around. When Gallows return to Vancouver, hopefully with a follow-up to their debut release “Orchestra of Wolves”, this band should own the stage handily. By Derek Leschasin Photo: Jordana Meilleur
Sunday, January. 27, 2008 The Plaza Club - Vancouver BC
w/ This is H ell and Cancer Bats
The line-up on January 27 at the Plaza Club promised an intense evening. With Long Island hardcore band “This is Hell” opening, Toronto’s “Cancer Bats” following up and England’s “Gallows” headlining, it was no surprise that an early all-ages show on a Sunday night attracted more than a respectable turnout.
patiently wait for the U-bahn (subway) which (of course) is precisely on time. Berliners, always in a rush, continue to their destination with heads up and eyes front, aiming to arrive early, never late. All of this is thrown out the window for Silvester, for the regular rules of behavior simply no longer apply. With a population of just over 4.5 million, all of them seemed to be out on the streets. By far the biggest bash of all at the historic Brandenburg Gates had well over a million people, beating out the New York City’s Times Square party by a hundred thousand or so. D.J’s spun and bands of all types pumped out tunes all night long, accompanied by a brilliant laser light show, while the beer gardens, (drinking in public is not only allowed, it is encouraged) bratwurst, and famous Berliner currywurst kiosks did very brisk business indeed. So, with 25% of the population at one party, the other 75% claimed a piece of sidewalk (or street) for their own party. It really is a sight to behold as the normally reserved Berliners descend to an orgy of violent madness. All were equipped with enormous amount of spirits. The preferred method of disposal of the empty’s seemed to be either; a) via explosion, or b) by being tossed away in any direction, mostly though, to the street. The personal arsenals were impressive indeed. Roman candles, bottle rockets, 1/4 and 1/8th sticks of dynamite, and of course, the best super-strength firecrackers (also legal and encouraged) that China can make. All of these were lit off all night in every direction, by everyone in attendance, with complete disregard for the well-being of anyone. By 1am local time (7 pm Eastern, 4 pm Pacific) as the trams slowly continued down the garbage-strewn streets, the sound of broken glass being crushed under the steel wheels was an unusual compliment to the symphony of destruction. Explosions of various strengths occurred constantly. Either something was being blown up, or something was about to be blown up. Some maniac caught up in the frenzy, brandished his 9mm and fired off several rounds in the air. The shots, of course, were blending in with the environment, creating a “concerto a la volento, por favor”. Escaping the pandemonium alone is reason enough to celebrate. Never
mind Silvester, the mere fact you have all appendages intact and accounted for is enough to make you want to raise your glass again and again and again…
Berlin, Germany December 31, 2007 Imagine opening a door, any door that leads to the outside world and encountering a dark world full of chaos and mayhem, with street urchins running amok. Stupefied and zombie-like, all of them with the same evil glare in their eyes, glossed over and practically salivating at the prospects of creating pure anarchy. You carefully open your fortified, barricaded security door only to tread upon a battle zone so immersed in wanton destruction the prospect of venturing further seems idiotic to say the least. But carry on you do, only to find the world which you have been accustomed to has been horribly altered. The door bangs shut behind you, bringing with it a sense of finality. Once the survival instinct kicks in, you bolt in a zig-zag track trying to avoid all the hazards along the way, but inadvertently becoming a prime target just by being out there. Gaze through the smoke-filled streets if it dissipates enough, avoid the fragments of glass, constant explosions,
street toughs and mentally challenged and heavily armed 80´s era post-communist punks. Disregard the malfunctioning traffic lights, throw in the polizei (local police) watching the insanity unfold at a safe distance (eating bratwurst and lighting off fireworks themselves!). It may very well be
some sort of post-apocalyptic scenario in which all remaining humans have gone mad… they have!!! But, there has been no apocalypse, despite evidence to the contrary, nor any major global skirmish. What has happened is…Silvester 2008!! The seasoned globetrotter may hazard a guess as to the location of the aforementioned mayhem. Baghdad? Mogadishu? Beirut? All wrong, not even close. The answer is Berlin. For the other 364 days a year Berliners are efficient, orderly people who go about their business in a stoic, purposeful way. The only time words are uttered by those outstanding citizens is when they are politely requesting something. Even casual conversation seems to be frowned upon in public. Orderly crowds
By Jimmy Lynch, Toronto Correspondent
The eternal battle between good and evil, conveyed in truly epic fashion, and bridging the progressive, black-metal, and power-metal genres in a seamless manner. Good here is portrayed by lead female vocalist - Floor, a trained operatic soprano, who soothes with beautiful and heartfelt delivery. Evil is played by composer/guitarist and vocalist Sander, who uses the more guttural black-metal approach. Like a cross between Nightwish, Dragonforce and Dimmu Borgir’s Death Cult Armageddon, After Forever’s eponymous album is truly a summation for the band. Lyrically themes of struggle, temptation, and existence are painted with ethereal and dream imagery, and present a grand journey for the listener. Sonic depth is created through electronic and industrial flourishes, as well as a rousing orchestral section which conveys a sense of wonder and whimsy at times, and doom and danger at others. Layered vocals, choirs, haunting whispers, and soaring choruses help to further set the atmosphere. The two strongest and most representative tracks here are centerpiece “De-Energized” and 11 minute epic “Dreamflight”. The latter is a journey through dream and nightmare, heaven and hell, where you are welcomed and guided through the light and the dark before the final battle. “Who I Am” is another standout, with impressive guitar acrobatics, and a second, more rebellious female vocal part added, fleshing out two sides to same coin, contemplating temptation before declaring “This is not who I am”. A journey worth taking. By Andrew Johnston
about to go at it. I’m sure stranger things have happened during mating season, but on the back cover is a picture of two horse skulls. Those demonic beasts must have eaten each other’s faces. It was at this point that I knew I’d better get ready for a metal onslaught. ‘The Final Dawn’ begins with power, speed, and aggression that will keep all the longhaired, leather clad skids content. I can see them now with their fists in the air banging those long mops, dressed in black from head to toe. I was a little distraught when I only noticed one hair farmer in the band photo, but I’ll let it slide because this is good hardcore metal. Metal singers these days are usually guilty of one of two things. 1) Breaking out into horrible melodic singy choruses that remind me more of emo than metal, or 2) Bad Phil Anselmo impressions. Ryan Bauchman is guilty of neither, showing pure rage the whole time. The Pantera influences lie in the guitars, which is a good thing. When the solos are played they aren’t cheesy, and the breakdowns are nothing but heavy. The song ‘Pale Horse’ had some amazing guitar work with mean riffs, and a wanked out epic solo under screams of hostility. The pure fury of ‘Bound by Blood’ the speed of ‘Unbound’ and the breakdown’s in ‘In Life’ made these songs the standout tracks to my ears. So if you’re a fan of hardcore metal, you’ll be a fan of Arise and Ruin. And if you’re a fan of violent horses that eat each other’s faces, then you’re fucked. by Denis Maile
When Electric Night Falls
Arise and Ruin
The Final Dawn
Upon being handed Arise and Ruin’s debut album ‘The Final Dawn’ the first thing I noticed was a picture of two demonic looking horses on the cover. With reared heads and crazy red eyes, they are
The sound of a city waking up, the constant electrical hum of the matrix and the goddamn bleep of the garbage truck backing up at 6:00 AM - this is the landscape that Bisc1 evokes through his dense electro beats and blunted slang. As a one-two punch, MC/Producer Bisc displays a clarity of vision and a unique sound that sets him well apart from other dorky white Hip Hop artists. Steeped in the legacy of the Definitive Jux aesthetic, “When Electric Night Falls” blazes new ground in the realm of accessible, intelligent Hip Hop – full of angst and turmoil, but under just enough sedation to make it enjoyable.
The opener “Night Fall” introduces Bisc’s sound with rolling drums and a synth hook that’ll stick in your head for days. The theme of internal struggle amidst the chaos of modernity carries us through the “Turbulence” of the past days decisions into a spectator’s view on “Parallels”. Standout tracks for me are “Paranoia”, with it’s relentless “I’m bugging…” hook and “Strange Love” with Mere guesting to rhyme about “the game of writing on walls”. Bisc’s flow is as dense and complex as his production and the two elements blend seamlessly into a solid and deeply satisfying sound. For fans of “Junk Science” and “Iller Than Theirs”, Bisc1 taps a similar vein of “everyman” persona, but with a head space that is more futuristic dystopia than present day nostalgia. The common thread here is a refusal to embrace Hip Hop stereotypes and the dedication to make real music that people can feel. By Dave “Corvid” McCallum
Warner Music Canada Buck 65 has a reputation for idiosyncratic lyrics and production and this is certainly not lost on him, in Situations. Notorious for crammed lyrics and bipolar production, this album unfortunately hits this spot once again. However, this album does bring Buck 65 into a new and more mature era. This album carries a consistent theme surrounding the year 1957 exploring deviant culture, the Cold War, beatniks and poetry, and the all-powerful, baby-boomer appropriate paranoia The hope that I had for this album was clarity and in this respect, he achieved this. He has a long way to go before his ambitions stop competing with his intentions but this album is much more concise…a much-needed departure from previous albums. Situations features a competition that overwhelms the majority of the album. The production is focused largely around drums and competes relentlessly with Buck’s lyrics. There are a couple moments of clarity in ‘Beatific’ and ‘Mr. Nobody’ with slow and well-thought-out beats, production and lyrical emphasis. It is my hope that Buck 65 will progress into a more fleshedout, and a more crystallized sound and composition. In any case, Buck 65 still holds strong on his own and very defined genre (god forbid we call this hip-hop because this is certainly a breed of its own), he continually achieves growth and selfresurrection with every beat and lyric his music delivers. Viva La Revolution. By Frankie Jacks
Between the Buried and Me
Victory/UMG Between the Buried and Me’s latest release, Colors, has to be one of the strongest albums of the year, as far as aggressive music goes. Why? These guys are real innovators who burst beyond their genre and create something new, not something that can simply be defined by fusing two or more genres together. True, Colors features brutal death metal snarls, heavy guitars and ultra-fast drum beats, but the experimentation on each track makes this so much more than another metal album. Bizarro time signatures and song structures are common, turning eight long tracks (the album is over an hour long) into songs that seem to end too soon. The band switches from a sound not unlike that of Brit-rockers Muse, to jazzy instrumentals, to furious metal, often within the same track. Granted, this is not the most accessible album. Straightahead thrashers may not be pleased, and the entire album tends to defy pop conventions. Nevertheless, it seems pretty obvious that BTBAM aren’t out to answer either criticism, and have instead followed the path of creativity. This is a must-have for anyone who doesn’t mind having music fuck with them a little bit. By Derek Leschasin
Century Media Records A band that, without fail, can produce a new album every couple of years makes me a little suspicious. Are these guys really trying or just churning out low-grade material? On the other hand, are they such damn good songwriters that putting out a new album isn’t even a struggle? Whatever the case, German metalcoreheads Caliban have put out a decent album in the form of “The Awakening”, the band’s sixth studio release in their ten years of existence. Decent, but not all that it could be. There has never been a shortage of angry Germans and this album is heavy. For the most part Caliban’s sound is similar to a band like Poison the Well, with heavy, chugging guitar riffs, breakdowns and ferocious screaming from frontman Andreas Dorner. The band also switches it up in most songs, including melodic sections that feature the clean singing of guitarist Denis Schmidt. There are also a few keyboards
sparsely thrown into a couple of tracks, but for the most part this is pounding, straight-up metal broken up by Schmidt’s interludes. That could be part of the problem with this record. For starters, Caliban aren’t exactly breaking boundaries here, as most of the riffs are fairly repetitive – good for headbanging and slamming people around, but not particularly creative. When this band really does get intense, as often as not Schmidt’s crooning interrupts. The man has a nice enough voice, but these ‘pretty’ sections really don’t seem necessary. I’m thinking this album could have been a lot stronger if Caliban focused on the guitar-work and kept up the thrash. By Derek Leschasin
Sudden Death Records
The Black Spot (Re-issue)
While You Were Sleeping
This best of collection spans Classified’s 12+ years as a prolific MC/Producer. 22 tracks from seven albums covering everything from his earliest “pre-pubescent” works produced while still living with his parents, through the weeded late nineties and into his aloof game face period, including his latest fully matured works as well as tracks produced for other vocalists. Even from the earliest, Class’s skills were well developed and his characteristic flow only improves with time. His productions grow steadily richer and more varied, from the “4 track” days to the polished sounds of “Hitch-Hiking Music.” What shines through most is Classified’s undeniable work ethic and devotion to Hip Hop method – even though I find “Beatin’ It” a little self indulgent (track 16, that is…), it lays it out pretty clear. The only shortcoming in my mind is that his lyrics focus too much on Hip Hop lifestyle without digging much deeper. Nothing wrong with that, I mean write what you know. With a flow and delivery like that though, the visual element can really come through strong, especially on storytelling tracks like “Past Out” and “Hard to be Hip Hop.” “Addicted” is all about having concepts, next come the 3D pictures in your head. The bonus DVD features 12 dope videos, from the self deprecatingly funny cartoon for “Unexpected,” through the many years of hoodies and starter caps on the road to MuchMusic rotation. Seriously, criticisms aside Classified is better than 90% of other Canadian MC’s. He produces some of the dopest tracks emerging from the depths of the Great White North (no pun intended), and for my money puts on a better show than 90% of all Hip Hop artists around. Watch out! By Dave “Corvid” McCallum
People need trouble — a little frustration to sharpen the spirit on, toughen it. Artists do; I don’t mean you need to live in a rat hole or gutter, but you have to learn fortitude, endurance. Only vegetables are happy. - William Faulkner D.O.A. are definitely not vegetables. As a band that’s been around for almost 30 years, they’ve learned what it takes to escape the rat hole and endure. Set-backs; they’ve seen their share, but for each one they face they seem to rebound with greater strength, greater character and greater artistic expression. Take their 1995 release “The Black Spot” for example. Recently re-issued by Sudden Death Records (out of print since 2000), the circumstances surrounding the prerecording of “The Black Spot” may have potentially broken any lesser band, but D.O.A. is no lesser band. On January 25th, 1995, shortly before recording began, D.O.A. drummer Ken Jensen was killed in a house fire. The remaining members, Joe Shithead Keithley, Brian “Wimpy Roy” Goble and Ford Pier, were absolutely floored, but did the only thing they knew how, they toughed it out. As Joey wrote on the album liner notes: “It was unbelievable…. It almost seemed like way to much to carry on, but with the spirit of Ken Jensen at our sides we did” With the help of NoMeansNo drummer John Wright they entered the studio and produced what is arguably their smartest and most polished album to date. Listening to the musicians collected here in other bands over the years (The Subhumans, NoMeansNo, Jr. Gone Wild to name a few), its hard not to notice the subtleties each player brings to the recording. “Order” is reminiscent of Showbusiness Giants, while “Worries” has The Subhumans all over it and that familiar NoMeansNo sound pops its head up time and time again from somewhere just below the surface. With the pothead anthem “Marijuana Motherfucker” and the Canada Customs slagging “Je Declare” leading the way, this is as politically charged and as vital as anything D.O.A. has previously done. Overlooked for many years, “The Black Spot” is back and showcases D.O.A. at their meaty best. For a band who’ve made fortitude and endurance a way of life, this is yet another great accomplishment. Beat that vegetables! By Grimm Culhane
Eyes of Eden
Century Media Goth-metal has had a bit of a heyday in the last few years. Coming in on what looks to be the tail-end of that trend is Eyes of Eden, with their debut release, “Faith”. Having a female vocalist Franziska Huth - gives the band some similarity to Lacuna Coil, but there are strong ties, as well. Guitarist/songwriter Waldemar Sorychta produced every one of the band’s records. After also playing with Grip Inc. and Despair, Eyes of Eden is essentially Sorychta’s project. While Sorychta’s earlier two bands specialized in thrash metal, Eyes of Eden is brooding and almost symphonic, with only a dash of thrash thrown in. Strings and synths play a major role here, but it is definitely Huth’s voice that carries the album. Whatever else anyone can say about the album’s sound, Huth’s voice is gorgeous – it’s almost like listening to new-age singer Loreena McKennit gone metal (P.S. - she’s hot, too). At its best, “Faith” is melodic, multi-layered, radio-friendly goth rock (including a couple of decent singles like opener “Winter Night”).Unfortunately, there’s little energy on much of this record – something that is almost, but not quite, masked by slick production. Despite Sorychta’s past, there isn’t much in the way of challenging guitar-work here, nor does the tempo get much beyond plodding. With a voice like hers, one hopes Huth will go far, but let’s also hope it’s in a vehicle a little more interesting. By Derek Leschasin
top of a whole song, this time “Superman of Love” by Johnny Guitar Watson. Ghost gets some live backing from The Rhythm Roots Allstars on “!”, and Masta Killa trades verses on “Killa Lipstick”. While there are no major departures from Ghost’s signature sound and flow, this is a damn good album full of fresh soul cuts, vivid imagery and Ghostface’s irrepressible, itchy trigger finger style narrative bombast. He takes it from the scene of a fresh homicide on “Walk Around”- all paranoid and jumpy, to the ultimate party with all of his favourite rappers and R+B singers in “White Linen Affair (Toney Awards)”. His hyperinflated vocals never lag and Ghost puts more soul into every line than some MC’s have on a whole album. So good I almost didn’t want to spoil the surprise for you by describing it at all, “The Big Doe Rehab” once again proves that real MC’s can actually get better with time, and Ghostface Killah delivers the real Hip Hop for those tired of the breathless flows on the radio. By Dave “Corvid” McCallum
The Process of Indoctrination
Indie Current metal bands heavily influenced by classic metal are in no way uncommon these days. While the debut album by Vancouver based Gross Misconduct most certainly revels in its influences, it also effortlessly manages to craft a sound of their own. You cannot go wrong when early Metallica, Pantera, Slayer, At The Gates and Mastodon are said influences and what results is a menacingly raw, blistering offering. On display here are 7 cuts of pure metal, complete with impressive musicianship and meaty riffage. Lead off shredder “The War Breeds On” gives a sense of what the listener is in for with spiralling guitars, lightening fast drumming and satisfyingly harsh vocals, which can be likened to those of Mastodon’s Troy Saunders. The standouts here are “The Humbler” which comes across as a thrashier “Far Beyond Driven” era Pantera or “Burn My Eyes” era Machine Head and Driven Fanatic with its pulsating double bass, stop start guitars and killer call and answer vocals. Gross Misconduct is a local band worth supporting, especially for fans of underground 80s thrash. Here’s looking forward to what Gross Misconduct will produce next. This is a great debut album! By Andrew Johnston
The Big Doe Rehab
Def Jam Records From the almost cartoonish cover image, it’s hard to tell that Abdul Raheem, AKA Ghostface Killah (AKA Tony Starks, etc…), is a 37 year old practicing Sunni Muslim who battles with diabetes. Somehow this in no way contradicts the album’s focus on money, women, and rising from the streets to live the high life. Ghost’s soul drenched sounds and manic flow just gets better with time, and “Big Doe” has all the elements that made “Pretty Toney” and “Fishscale” instant classics. Everything you wanted, from Tony Starks skits, collabs with Wu Tang comrades Raekwon, Method Man, U-God and Cappadonna, and awesome acapella from OX, to Ghost rhyming right over
Nature Sounds/Fontana North After all these years Havoc finally drops his solo album on Nature Sounds…and it sucks! Seriously, I ain’t pullin any punches on this one - would Hav want any less? Same shit different album, and while Hav’s flows have always been impeccably tight, without the collabs it’s dead boring - endless litanies of gun talk, fuck you’s and hatred for the haters. What else would you expect you ask? A change of content from the Infamous Mobb Deep Don? Actually, I was more interested to see where Hav’s at with the beats - I mean I fucking study his old shit, up to Amerikaz Nightmare even, for the brilliant production. I don’t know if its the new software or old age creeping in but these mouse click Pro-Tools beats seriously lack punch. Sure they’re spooky and paranoid - kinda like Zelda on a bad trip, and all the drum sounds are like tiny fists hitting tinfoil. Where are the relentless, migraine inducing snares, gut pummelling kicks, and scratchy dark samples that made “The Infamous” and “Helll on Earth” as heavy as Metal? Prodigy’s only verse, on “Set Me Free,” sounds like they temporarily brought him out of a coma to drawl it out, but at least his gangsta is real and the menace in his voice is convincing enough to make even these sluggish bars sound dope. Havoc weaves through cadences with ease - and a 500 word vocab, one of his favourite being “faggot”. Come on man, you’re like 32 and you still say “faggot”?! Napoleon complex in full effect. Oh well, yet another well established artist falling victim to his own narcissism. Too slow, too slick, too much of the same shit. Even if the street life is still real for Havoc, this album sounds like the view from a fortress in a comfortable position looking down, bored shitless and too blazed to notice. Better luck next time. By Dave “Corvid” McCallum
holding the get out of jail free card. And break free she does. Yes - nothing but praise here. She should have pulled D’Angelo out of his career hole, to drop a verse or two. Same goes for Maxwell and Angie Stone. Would have been a gem. Only gripe is her session guitarist blatantly lifts from Mahavishnu Orchestra’s “You Know, You Know” track. I don’t think it “embodies the melody of” either. Although it could be like Elaine ripping off that Ziggy cartoon and calling it her own without knowing it. Regardless, Jill Scott can call this her own and she certainly knows it. By E.S. Day
Gran’ Dad’s Nerve Tonic
The Real Thing Words and Sounds Vol. 3
Oh this one is easy. Imagine sucking on a Werthers candy that never dissolves. Creamy caramel, confined to a set of vocals. Sumptuous and satisfying, the latest album from songstress Jill Scott, reciprocates what true R&B (or Neo Soul for the white people) is truly all out about. Ms. Scott once again makes us play “Hide and Go Freak” bringing along Scott Storch’s production on some tracks, but more importantly her honor amongst (harmonious) thieves, leaves her
The newest addition to the Definitive Jux family is a surprising left turn for a label whose sound has become associated for some almost exclusively with the dark and abstract. Based out of Brooklyn, Junk Science are: Baje One on the mic and Snafu on the beats, and the everyman world they conjure on tracks, is refreshingly positive and laid back (and believe me I don’t say those words very often). Junk Science are members of the Nuclear Family collective, a group of seven or so NYC Hip Hop artists in various formations of collaboration, and like their comrades Iller Than Theirs, their style is rooted in Old School production and tight but relaxed flows. Through the good graces of fate, Def Jux picked up their latest (and second) release - “Grand’Dad’s Nerve Tonic”, and they have just finished a 22 date tour with Del the Funky Homosapien and Devin the Dude. “What’s this sir?”, “Drink it!” – from the album’s intro and the cavernous drums of the opener “Slojo”, to the Sunday morning wake up call “Do it Easy”, the “Tonic’ soothes and mellows the splintered nerves – just the thing for Def Jukies coming down while the sun comes up. Each track is a gem in it’s own right, and standouts include “Jerry McGuire”, the anthem for the unsatisfactorily employed, with the chorus -“I’m gonna quit my job!”, and “That Being Said” featuring Iller Than Theirs- the requisite slammin’ party track. “Hey!” showcases Baje One’s dexterous flow (and slacker mentality!) and Snafu’s subtle and complex productions. For those that have always loved the Definitive Jux world but wished to see it expand in it’s conception, Junk Science are like the antidote to the paranoia and hostility that saturate much of the Def Jux sound. Not that I’m not paranoid or hostile, it’s just nice to guzzle some of that Gran’ Dad’s Nerve Tonic and forget about it all once in a while. By Dave “Corvid” McCallum
The Dusty Foot on the Road
Those of you familiar with K’naan’s previous album, The Dusty Foot Philosopher, you know that it received both acclaim and criticism. The majority of criticism came from other artists called out and dissed in the album (“…if I rhymed about home and got descriptive, I’d make 50 Cent look like Limp Bizkit” and citing K-OS as “a suburban negro turned hip hop hero”). Regardless, those of you who have been following the young Somali’s sound and content know that he is one to be reckoned with. He does border on the righteous, ridiculing the quintessential American ‘gangsta’, and reminding us that African civil war always trumps innercity gangland-violence (it does). Can you blame him? This guy fired his first gun at 8, accidentally blew up half his school with an armed grenade and witness three of his friends shot to death. Mogadishu in the 1990’s was a painfully brutal era that K’naan managed to escape as a refugee to Canada at the age of 13. He has made a notable departure from mainstream politicized hip hop and stripped it bare, reveling the reality beyond a glock in Compton and the Americanized version of Africa and showing us the dusty back alleys of Mogadishu littered with spent shells and burning tires, hostile roadblocks and bloody civilian riots. Sounds depressing, right? Not a chance. K’naan delivers his opinions in a subtle message leaving with a soft understanding of what he comes from. If you get that then you are ready for The Dusty Foot on the Road. This is a simple and stripped down version of his some of his previous album with vivid and strong new sounds and collaborations. Recorded live from Djibouti to Edmonton, the album is largely acoustic and rooted deep in African music and culture. The sound is subliminal, dignified and deeply sentimental but just as raw as the first album. K’naan has managed to show a rounded evolution in his music, despite his short recording career, and promises to continue down his road slowly revealing to us his inner experience. By Frankie Jacks
into “The March”, an anthem for the street soldiers and “Hustler” is a straight up, one-drop roots reggae number for the hustlers and riders that would make father Marley proud. “The Conversation,” featuring Tessanne Chin, is a beautiful back and forth between a gangster and his girl, and the Lover’s Rock continues through “Royal Vibes” and “I Got You”. Some club bangers, some struggling “sufferah” tunes, and some deep spiritual vibes close out the album. The production throughout favours the crisp sounds of modern Jamaican music, with Ky-Mani’s emotionally rich voice soaring over the mix. The sounds are soothing and spiritual and at the same time real and gritty. Just how much of the hustler life he has lived (like his character in Shottas), I don’t know, but Ky-Mani Marley speaks for the ghetto dwellers forced into crime as a means to survive, in a world where morality is vague, but spiritual integrity is Iron like a Lion. Reggae is sometimes seen as pacifist music, when it was first the music of the rudeboy and the struggler. Ky-Mani Marley is the next level in it’s evolution, linking the Hip Hop world with the Jamaican roots from which it sprouted. Like his character in “Shottas”, he merges both worlds to take what is rightfully his – a permanent place in the music pantheon, whatever the style, with a rare integrity and a real message. By Dave “Corvid”McCallum
By the People, For the People
On his first album since 2001’s “Many More Roads”, Ky-Mani steps out to prove that he is more than just a rootsman, and that his star shines as brightly as any of the Marley sons. From the opener “I’m Back”, featuring Young Buck and Louie Rankin, Ky-Mani rocks a beautifully fluid melodic gangster flow, equal parts Bob and Mobb, and his gravelly tone merges
perfectly with Buck’s. The righteous rudeboy lyrics continue
As I sit here in my easy-chair by the fire, with my pipe and my slippers and my trusty dog at my feet, I can’t help but feel grateful that I was able to get my easy-chair, my pipe, my slippers and my dog out of the house before it became the raging inferno I see before me. Yes, in a world of fleeting pleasures and falling ashes its nice to have things to appreciate. Take the new Mudvayne album By the People, For the People for instance. Showing some greatly deserved appreciation “back” to their massive fan base, Mudvayne asked fans to do something unprecedented, join with them and help construct an album. By visiting their website, fans could help pick the tracks, submit artwork for the album and even participate in making a video. When’s the last time a band asked their fans to do that? As if that weren’t enough appreciation already, By the People, For the People consist of a mix of live recordings, rarities, demos, as well as two new recordings, “Dull Boy” and a cover of the Police song “King of Pain.” Lead singer Chad Gray even gives a brief introduction to each and every song. I can almost picture him in his easy-chair with his pipe and his slippers and his trusty dog at his feet as he records the intros. I mean seriously, what’s not to love here? Nothing. There is absolutely nothing “not” to love here. The
demo versions of “Silenced” and “Not Falling” are fucking amazing, almost better than the finished versions. The live versions of “Dig” and “World So Cold” are so perfectly captured its like actually being there and the mix of songs and versions chosen gives this album a broad, yet cohesive structure and appeal. So, as I remain seated here in my easy-chair, warmed by the smoldering remnants of my home, with my pipe and my slippers and my trusty dog at my feet, I can’t help but appreciate how good By The People, For The People actually is. Definitely a one-of-a-kind joint effort (pun intended) both Mudvayne and their fans can be proud of. Perhaps with the success of this album it will generate more of its kind from other artists. Perhaps all albums will come “custom-made” in the future. Perhaps the smoke is going to my head. Perhaps the fire department will be here soon. Ah, perhaps. By Grimm Culhane
variety of higher quality formats, including FLAC). For less than the price of a shitty cup of well-marketed coffee, you can support one of the best releases of the past year *without* feeding any dying record labels. And if you’re still skeptical or have to consult with your accountant before spending five bucks, you can always check out the album for free on the site. By Calder Fertig
The Old Prince
Black Box Recordings From the fairy tale intro for “Quest for Glory”, it’s obvious this is not your average rap record. Setting the tone for a conscious, self reflective album more reminiscent of old De La and 90’s Common than any 2008 sound (Canadian or otherwise), Shad embarks on a journey of self knowledge that is mostly captivating, if at times understated. Hailing from London Ont, Shad’s lyrics typically vilify the contemporary rap scene for it’s shallowness, while at the same time holding out the hope of it’s salvation. The fact that he neither curses nor swears means I could give a copy to my nine year old son for his birthday, while at the same time his swaggering braggadocio can at times be as overbearing as ignorant “fuck you bitch” raps. And he disses weed…. Regardless, I liked the album. The beats are laid back and East Coast funky. Shad’s flow is flawlessly effortless, positive but not self righteous. The message of self reliance and self worth is to me the essence of Hip Hop, and there’s no fronting on gangster bullshit here. Unfortunately, the album seriously loses momentum on the overly long interlude “Behind the Thinning veil of self deprecating humour, the old Prince is afraid he may have just wasted the last three years” – uh, yeah… so you can play the piano… yawn. By track 11 “Exile” shit’s rocking again with boom bap drums, beatbox and cello. “Get Up” keeps it slamming, but the outro featuring Kamau is a too heartfelt monologue that left me cold. Tight flows, solid beats, talent and skills and something to say. The album may not hold one’s attention equally throughout, but it show the makings of a unique Canadian Hip Hop talent. We’ll see how his live game is when he opens for Classified on Jan 20th. By Dave “Corvid” McCallum
The Inevitable Rise and Liberation of Niggy Tardust
Indie With his third album, “The Inevitable Rise and Liberation of Niggy Tardust,” slampoet/director/alt. hip-hop musician Saul Williams and producer Trent Reznor (Nine Inch Nails) have created a genre-defying instant classic. From the thunderous electrotribal beats in the opener “Black History Month” to the crushing Bomb Squad style breaks in “Tr(n)igger” (complete with a sample from Public Enemy’s “Welcome to the Terrordome”), Williams’ album is constantly switching styles while always sounding completely cohesive. Though it is unquestionably a hip-hop album at its core, “Niggy Tardust” challenges the genre’s conventions both lyrically and musically, forging a sound that is distinctly its own. Whether using classic 808 rhythms, skittering industrial squelches, or neo-soul loops, Williams’ vocals always lace the songs together into a compelling, eclectic whole. He even manages to take U2’s “Sunday Bloody Sunday” and make it his own. By taking some of the best aspects of hip-hop and mutating them into a strange, yet utterly compelling new form, “Niggy Tardust” is to hip-hop what The Doors’ first album was to rock. It’s fierce when it needs to be, but there are also astonishing moments of fragility, as found in the track “No One Ever Does.” It’s hard to know what to expect with every track change, and that’s part of what makes “Niggy Tardust” such an exciting album. As such, Williams has finally fulfilled the promise that he uttered on his previous album: This ain’t hip-hop no more, it’s bigger than that. And here’s the best part: taking a cue from Radiohead, the album was released without a label on www.niggytardust.com as a free download (for lower-quality MP3s) or for $5 (for a
Washington Square Serenade
New West/Fontana North No Place to Run , No Place to Hide is an apt theme for Steve Earle’s new CD Washington Square Serenade; however, whereas this theme has resurfaced within the context of many of Earle’s previous releases, here it seems as if he is using this theme to demonstrate that being in New York City in Greenwich Village is making him a much more contented chronicler of the human condition because of life’s lessons learned. Very telling of Earle’s coming to a truce with his demons is the tune “Days Aren’t Long Enough”. It is a duet with his wife Allison Moorer. “Oxycontin Blues” is another tune that references Earle’s past addictions, but without the previous overt resignation. On first listen I felt that I did not really care for this CD. Was I ever wrong? It grows on you; it is not in your face like many of Steve’s previous albums. Nevertheless, it has some of Earl’s great storytelling and inventive instrumentation. The musical arrangements are accessible, yet contain many layers that have to be read, listened to, and dissected- as if one is peeling a piece of cinnamon. There is also a DVD version of Washington Square Serenade. It is mostly Steve discussing his songwriting . Interesting for sure, although I feel that the DVD mainly appeals to die-hard fans, while the CD has a very populist feel to it. By William”Moose”Roberts
whose intelligent streetwise flow inspires Styles on a politicized, dare I say conscious tip. With Swizz Beatz and Akon, and ringtones for sale, it’s clear that Styles P is going for the mainstream on this one. The beats are straight Saturday night clubbin’, but the flow is smoother, smarter, and harder than most of the fools on the radio. Given the choice, I’d go for this over Belly any day. By Dave “Corvid” McCallum
Learnin’ The Hard Way
Super Gangster (Extraordinary Gentleman)
On his third solo release, Lox alumnus Styles P walks a fine line between hardcore street lyricism and cutting edge contemporary club bangers. From the lead off “Blow your Mind” produced by Swizz Beatz, the slick highly processed digital sound and breathy chorus almost turned me off until the blunted gangster flow kicked it up a notch. Shit gets progressively darker up to “All I Know is Pain”, produced by the Alchemist – a gritty testament of jaded street hustling reminiscent of Al’s work with Prodigy. The Akon chorus on “Got My Eyes on You” brings it back to the dancefloor for a few cuts, and the mac game is in full effect on “Look at Her”. Raw Buck drags Styles back to the gutter on “Shoot Niggas”, and Ghostface drops by to amp him up a level on “Star of the State.” Fellow Lox Jadakiss and Sheek Louch are adequate on “Gangster,Gangster”, and the album closes with my pick “’Cause I’m Black” featuring Black Thought of the Roots,
Here we have another punk/metal group whose members are all black. I chose this disc primarily as I feel I could be a proper authority on “Black” metal. Why? Well you’re not!. Proper Grounds, Bad Brains, 24-7 Spyz, Znowhite amongst others, have all had an influence on me. As a white guy this means nothing, nor does it make me down with my new found Holland homies. Next up comin’ “Straight Outta Eindhoven” – The Spades. Can they call themselves that? What if they named themselves The Jiggaboos? Because they’re black I guess its okay. What’s NOT okay, is ripping off every song ever written by The Dictators. Yes - that’s right; they’re a black version of The Dictators. I shit you not - one of the band members is even named Handsome Dick Spade!. Give me a break. Still, fastpaced chunky riffage had me doing the twist. Stand out track “Beat Me” with its anal probing commentary gave me the shivers. Even more frightening, that these 5 “Sons of Sanford” based out of Holland have all been in jail and all look like they played gang members on Good Times. Scary. By E.S. Day
Genuine Sense of Outrage
I have to admit, the first thing that impressed me about this disc was the cover art. Check it out: it’s a guy playing air guitar, with a fucking wolf’s head bursting out of his chest, and the blood pouring out of the wolf’s mouth is turning into little red devils with wings and swords and shit! Give this cover a 9point-something in the “badass ranking”. For one of the more low-key releases of 2007, The Warriors’ Genuine Sense of Outrage has a surprising number of guest vocalists, including Lou Koller from Sick of It All, Andrew Neufeld from Comeback Kid, and most surprising, Lemmy from Motorhead, who is featured on the track “Price of
Punishment”. Amazingly, none of this comes off as gimmicky, and actually adds to the album. As for the music within said badass cover, The Warriors play a blend of hardcore crossed with metal. Sure, so does everyone else these days, but this band has a more unique sound than others in the genre, sort of like Rage Against the Machine meets earlier Refused, maybe featuring a cameo by Madball. Marshall Licthenwaldt’s vocals are a perfect, raspy howl, and carry the spirit of the album’s “Genuine Sense of Outrage”. That cover art might get this album in your CD player, but it’s the music that’ll keep it jammed in there for weeks. By Derek Leschasin
Fear Nuttin’ Band
Limited Edition EP Part 1: Thug & Part 2: Life
The Best of 2Pac Part 1: Thug & Part 2: Life
“Yo I wrote this back in ‘ninety fo’” – yep… like in the Chappelle Show skit where he’s rapping about shit that happened after he died, the late Tupac Shakur just keeps on releasing. This time around it’s a two part best of collection put together with the blessing of his mother Afeni Shakur. The dedication speaks of the medicine of his lyrics, “filled with his blood, sweat and tears”, that is ultimately “music for your spirit”. Viewed in this light, and with over ten years passed since his death, Tupac’s spirit shines through in all his rugged resilience and tragic machismo. Part I – THUG – kicks off with Snoop and Pac on “2 of Amerikaz Most Wanted”, into “California Love”, then moves into the more contemplative “So Many Tears” and “I Ain’t Mad At Cha”. Even on the upbeat tracks, the melancholy patina of age gives his voice a morose quality, full of the foreknowledge of his doom. Part II – LIFE – brings the upliftment and self confident swagger back with “Definition of a Thug Nigga” and “Still Ballin.” The pain of life is transformed into something meaningful through shared struggle on tracks like “Never Call U Bitch Again” and “They Don’t Give a Fuck About Us.” The vision of an idealized life on earth inspires “Ghetto Gospel” and “Thugz Mansion”. Did the world really need another Tupac compilation? This music is definitely timeless and presented in this format it takes on a spiritual resonance that is often lost in the controversial facts of Tupac’s brief, intense life. What is undeniable is that Tupac was more than a gifted artist and performer, he was the voice of a generation whose impact on the world is still being felt – what with 10 year olds in Africa going into battle with his face on their T-shirts! His struggles mirror the struggles of millions, and his voice resonates with a depth of feeling rarely equaled. RIP. By Dave “Corvid” McCallum
Produced by Terry Date (Soundgarden, Unearth), this Bad Brains clone meets a quasi-Fishbone hybrid, has in fact, mulled over their influences and dropped a 4-track ep that somewhat slakes your thirst for a modern day hero in the Reggae-Rock genre. Of course, having dreads or an authoritative sounding ragamuffin rant does not necessarily give this an official seal of approval. More Metal, more Dancehall. Please. With The Red Hot Chili Peppers seeping in a little too much on “Can’t Get Mi Weed”, your eyebrows might raise on their own. Without a doubt, the Fear Nuttin’ Band probably kill on the live circuit, so no point in breaking balls on a 4 -song EP. Their previous effort “Vibes” has been given a few kind words. Let’s wait until the album”YARDCORE” drops this April and see if they can instill some fear in the heart of the musicbuying public. Wherever they are. Track Listing: 1. Rule the World 2. Police State 3. Can’t Get Mi Weed 4. Fear (Old Crusty Version) By E.S. Day
Genitorturers Live In Sin
Edited by Seth Walker and Andy Ussach MVDvisual By Grimm Culhane
The self proclaimed “World’s Sexiest Rock Band” gets a chance to strip down and flaunt their stuff on their latest DVD release, Genitorturers - Live In Sin. Featuring ten expertly edited live tracks and three unreleased live versions of songs from their yet to be titled 2008 album, Gen, Bizz, Evil “D”, Andy and an assortment of willing victims give us their “Genitorturing” best.
Although sadomasochistic acts performed on the genitals
aren’t everyone’s cup of tea, this video has enough in it to satisfy any and all of your fetish requirements without unsightly build-up or sticky residue. That part is left to the viewers’ discretion and is highly advised. Come witness the devil whipping himself into a frenzy as Gen converts the self proclaimed righteous in “Devil In A Bottle.” Marvel at the deeply wretched, suspending themselves above the hapless audience as the Genitorturers grind out the virtues of a “House of Shame.” Gaze in awe at the eerie, sensual imagery of “Flesh Is The Law” or squirm and writhe as you chant along to “Public Enemy #1”. As if that weren’t enough to satisfy even the most deranged, wait there’s more. Included on this disc are some of the most fiendishly entertaining bonus features ever to be compiled. I could watch them for hours with one hand over and over again. Crazed mud wrestling, some of the most amazing tour antics you’ll ever see (care of Omaha, Nebraska), a rare Japanese Sin City promotional video, a Kiss sing along plus a behind the scenes look at the photo shoot for Hu$tler Magazine, this video has it all! Kelly’s bomb story is truly hilarious and a visit from Jello Biafra is like the blood splattered icing on this bloodbath birthday cake. If you are a “Cum Junkie’, a “Liar’s Liar” or just “One Who Feeds”, the rock and roll fetish fest of Genitorturers - Live In Sin is an excellent way to keep your mind occupied and your hands busy. Don’t say I didn’t warn you, and hand me a tissue would you? Thanks.
Gods of Time Square
Directed by Richard Sandler BRINK DVD By Derek Leschasin
Even if you’ve never been anywhere close to New York, chances are you’ve at least heard of Times Square. Occupying a prominent place in American pop culture (a culture that infiltrates pretty much every culture there is), Times Square is iconic – one of the city’s landmarks, its meeting-places. To the rest of us, it’s best known as the site of a never-ending series of New Year’s Eve specials. In this two-hour special edition release, “Gods of Times Square” gives us a very different, intimate view of those fabled city blocks. Film-maker Richard Sandler sets out
to record some of the most flamboyant and yet mostignored denizens of Times Square – the street preachers; religious zealots who seem to devote a significant chunk of their personal time to saving us all from hellfire or whatever in particular they deem is coming for us (and
rest assured it’s bad, because we’re all sinners). Filming over the course of the mid-90’s (1993-1998) Sandler introduces us to and follows an array of characters – some hateful, some mysterious and some simply bizarre. “Gods of Times Square” follows no particular linear progression – the characters Sandler focuses on seem timeless. Touched on lightly are the changes that took course throughout these years, as the Disney Store moved in and small businesses moved out, and Times Square became a more sanitized version of itself. Yet the religious doom prophets remain, as they always have and likely always will.
From the Sunset Strip Hardrock
Directed By Christoph Green MVD By Dave “Corvid” Tical’llum
I was not at his recent performance at Plush, so I can’t say if it lived up to his “live standards’ by this show. As he himself declares, “No one rocks a Mutherfuckin’ stage like I do!”, and this is a lesson in athletic showmanship. Leaping across the stage in his Air Nikes, crowd surfing, fake ejaculating and blazing blunts continuously, Meth embodies everything that makes the Wu great. Fellow Clan brothers Masta Killa and Inspecta Deck join in for the classic bangers and the ODB tribute, and hype man Streetlife backs Meth’s flows seamlessly. Sure, he only spits the first half of most lines and there is some drag in the middle before the second blunt is lit, but it’s all about endurance and Meth unleashes some serious flows and the intensity of his voice never wavers. Crowd response is not overwhelming, but enough so that he can walk off the stage onto their hands. Of course, the best part is when he swallows the lit end of a blunt and brings it back still burning. There…I spoiled it for you. Bonus Materials: • Photo Gallery * Extended Interviews • Hidden Scene
Method Man - Live
Directed by John Stu Maple Pictures By Dave “Corvid” McCallum
This flick is so bad it makes you stupid just by watching it. A collection of ridiculous gangster caricatures stumble through hackneyed dialogue and high school grade cinematography in a thrown together plot that they must have written as they went along. A judge’s daughter dies from tainted ecstasy, and two street level dealers are recruited to find out who cooked up the bad batch. Assisted by “The Surgeons”, a cartoonish band of ex cold-war assassins, they plod through scene after scene of …oh fuck it, it’s just too stupid to describe! Seriously, not even worth watching for cheap laughs, the only redeeming factor is the hot ladies, and they don’t appear nearly enough (or naked enough!).
Please tell me John Stu, how in the hell is Raekwon credited as a main character when he only speaks about five lines into a cell phone while lying on his back in jail, and even that seems taxing to him? Kids are obsessed with this gangsta shit, so give ‘em the real deal, not this Mack Bolan dime novel trash. Watch Shottas instead, I had to just to scour my brain of this mindless sludge.
Sandler films the stereotypical fire-and-brimstone preachers, condemning homosexuality, immorality, godlessness and so on, and then there are more obscure sects like “Jews for Jesus”, and the Hebrew Israelites, African-Americans (possibly from the Nation of Yahweh) claiming to be the ‘real Jews’, who spout black supremacist rhetoric as virulent as any a white racist has ever thought up. Finally, there are more thoughtful characters - like James, who carries a copy of the Koran and wears a priest’s collar, or Jimmy, who claims he is Christ returned, and will reveal himself to the world through rock n’ roll. At times, this film is a melange of strange imagery and even stranger people – the sort of scenes that only an urban mass concentration of people seems able to produce. Yet Sandler (through dialogue with various individuals, as there is no narration in this film) seems
intent on keeping a mostly-neutral position in his work. What becomes clear is that as strange as it seems, Times Square is actually an important venue for free debate and conversation. In an era where most debate is confined to the various forms of mass media, here we see real (though not necessarily normal) people voicing their ideas about the best way to live in the world. By skipping the narrative and getting face-to-face with people whom most others ignore, Sandler has created a challenging and thoughtful film. It’s also a piece of work that can never truly be out-of-date. There will likely always be someone on a street-corner with something to say. Special Edition includes: Over an hour of additional footage, including four featurettes.
KISSOLOGY Vol . 3, 1992-2000
VH1 Classic/Fontana North By E.S. Day
Banking on the brink of destruction, the lovely lads in KISS have released the third and final DVD compilation, KISSOLOGY Vol . 3, 1992-2000. In a series of rare, behind the scenes footage, this DVD chronologically showcases the band as they (Gene and Paul) go through a few line-up changes. Ok so more than a few. And what’s with everyone dying? Poor Eric Carr, my fave of the 3 KISS drummers, and Mark St. John who got stuck touring and recording for the inane “Animalize” album. Regardless, the boys do us right on this final installment with the thoroughly enjoyable “Reunion” Tour of ’96 and even some great behind the scenes takes from the “Unplugged” special the boys did, including all surviving members joining forces for a couple of tracks. You have to feel bad though for Ace. The poor bastard fucks up every version of “Shock Me” and can’t get the flares to shoot out of his Les Paul in a straight fashion, as he aims for the nearest roadie to whom he gives a warning nod. Like the Family Guy episode that mocks him twice (once by Gene), you get the same feeling as he tries so hard to comply with the on-air acts of invective tomfoolery that envelope his current reputation. The “Revenge” Tour kicks off Disc one – Gene’s Hair piece is so embarrassedly obvious you don’t mind it. Its the “Revenge” album tracks that are bothersome. This disc also contains the aforementioned “Unplugged” session, which has it moments, more pre-show stuff that’s interesting. Disc 2 brings forth the other official reunion – the tour. The MTV novelty shoots are here, real Super Bowl half-time stuff. Still need to go to the first volumes of the series to get an authentic “I Stole Your Love”, but nonetheless, good to see the boys, especially Paul Stanley as he belts it out in true KISS style with an instant audience connection that rivals the rest of the band’s vibe with the crowd. By the time you hit disc 3 this visual retrospective has taken its toll. We now have Peter handing out roses during “Beth” (of course), and we now officially reach the 8th version of “Rock & Roll All Nite” (I shit you not).
Some will undoubtedly skip to the prize at the bottom of the box -of disc 4 (there’s also a Limited Edition version/5 discs), the coveted Coventry show from 1973. Grainy, black and white footage that boasts restored audio and an adequate set list (9 tracks). No editing, just straight KISS with “Old” makeup from the first album before Casablanca started getting their paws into the mix. Basically, a tossup or toss-off: you can pull 2 of the 4 DVD ‘s out and hurl them at the next kid wearing a “Destroyer” T-Shirt who has never heard the album, and/or, enjoy the mistakes, numerous takes, twists and turns that bring you to the beginning of a Rock & Roll odyssey that just will–not-die. Speaking of dying again, we were kinda hoping Gene would go next.
Jetboy - THE GLAM YEARS
MVD By E.S. Day
We have a CD/DVD combo here with a few rarities but more important the poorly orchestrated interview footage that does enable old school closet queens to understand more as to why Jetboy never really made it. Sporting his trademark Mohawk hair, vocalist Mickey Finn is still the only off kilter glam rocker from the 80’s heyday of sleaze/glam debauchery that is still viable. A performance filmed at the infamous Whiskey-A-Go Go from 1986, is the integral part of this title. Fans of Love/Hate, L.A. Guns, Tuff, Swingin’ Thing, etc.. will find this appealing, maybe even some shit-kicker crossover stuff like Dangerous Toys, Law & Order or even Warrior Soul. The Hanoi Rocks influence also seeps in on classics like “Don’t Mess with My Hair.” Its too bad MCA fucked up the Jetboy legacy within one release. Maybe MVD can help keep the name and vibe from that era alive. In any event if you’re over 34 and remember this kind of flake, then roll up a bill and have a sniff of some classic old school sleaze metal.
Circle Of Friends - Live at the 9:30 Club
Directed By Christoph Green MVD By Grimm Culhane
- And Blood Was Shed In Warsaw
MVD By Jamie Horsley
Vader’s latest DVD, ‘And Blood Was Shed In Warsaw,’ would have been a wild show to see live, but lacks any of the theatrics that make a great live show worth watching on your shitty TV screen. They don’t do the costume thing, no makeup, no scantily-clad women, no whips, chains, no pyrotechnics, not even an elaborate set. Oh lights, they had good lighting. Just four dudes on a stage showing that they know how to kick metal ass. And they do. Vader plays their set flawlessly. All the glorious headbanging death metal that we’ve come to know and love and expect from Vader is unleashed on their friends, family and fans in their home country of Poland. Their home crowd worships them. Without a gesture or much more than a look, the crowd screams “Va-der! Va-der!” when the band stops playing for more than a few seconds. The wicked tunes and well lit stage monkeys last for an hour and a half and during that time found myself mulling about doing other things because, while the music was always great, the visuals weren’t holding my attention. I would much rather be there live. They’ve got better speakers, a better view, and a mosh pit. But it’s a DVD, so there’s other stuff on it. There are a couple music videos included, those are always cool. One is for a song they did for a video game, the other is for ‘Helleluya (God is Dead).’ The music videos aren’t bad. There’s even an interesting interview with Peter, the band’s lead singer. Too bad it’s in Polish with English subtitles. Good thing you can read. Speaking of reading, there’s a full 14 page history of the band on there too. My eyes burned after trying to read 14 screens full of text on my television. There are a few other goodies on there too. If they had made a live album on CD of the same concert, you wouldn’t have to buy this DVD. But there is no CD, so you must buy the DVD.
Long time rock icon and ex Hüsker Dü and Sugar frontman Bob Mould lets the cameras invade some of his personal space in the MVD release, Bob Mould: Circle Of Friends - Live at the 9:30 Club. Filmed at Washington, D.C.’s famous 9:30 Club (no guff!) during a stop on the 2005 Body of Song tour, Circle Of Friends is the first authorized and long overdue live concert release by Bob Mould. Featuring drummer Brendan Canty (Fugazi), keyboardist/ vocalist Richard Morel (Morel), and bassist/vocalist Jason Narducy (Rockets Over Sweden), and covering selections from across Bob’s entire musical career, this is definitely one fans both old and new can truly appreciate. Not one to do anything half-baked, Bob’s Circle Of Friends is something he should be proud of. From the numerous camera angles catching all the action to the quality of the audio, this is an intimate and extremely well produced piece of work. In a short segment at the beginning of the DVD, Bob and the rest of his band have a chance to explain how they all met. The chemistry between them becomes even more evident once the music starts, ripping through selections from all of Bob Mould’s incarnations, from Hüsker Dü and Sugar to his latest solo work. The majority of songs here are from Sugar’s 1992 release Copper Blue and Bob’s 2005 solo album Body of Song, but Hüsker Dü get their due as well… finally! Not playing Hüsker Dü songs since their break-up in 1987, Bob pulls out the classics like “Hardly Getting Over It” (Candy Apple Grey) and “Makes No Sense At All” (Flip Your Wig), dusts them off and trots them out as fresh as the day they were recorded. Those familiar with Bob Mould know he takes his live performances very seriously, but here is a side of Bob we rarely see. Loose, comfortable and yes, even happy, Bob proves you can go back again and be successful doing so.
UNREAL TOURNAMENT 3
PC-DVD Epic Games/Midway enemy rocket turning you into a fractal of virtual blood and tissue. Although the heart and soul of the game has not been changed there have been some decent additions aside from the boner-inducing graphics. First off the campaign mode has been beefed up by adding quality cut scenes and a hilariously cliché storyline. Some of the funniest dialogue attempts to explain how characters can die a seemingly infinite amount of times during war, and why coloured flags in some fields must be run back and forth between enemy camps. The campaign can be played in co-op mode with a buddy if you want to watch the Oscar calibre story unfold together. UT3 does fall short in some of the details. The menu system is convoluted and advanced graphic options are not customizable. Gamers will find themselves on a miniature scavenger hunt every time a setting needs to be changed. It’s important to note that there were many stability issues at the time this review was written so PC Gamers may want to hold back a few weeks until Epic releases the 1.1 patch. In the end UT3 provides the same entertainment as any decent action movie. You walking in expecting plot-less gratuitous violence and explosions, get your fill and leave content. By Kyle Wiltshire The “first person shooter” and other games genres have become increasingly realistic in both game play and visuals over the past five years. It seems that ever since the success of Counter-Strike in 1999 multiplayer shooters have been more and more geared around high-realism and “round based” game play. Unreal Tournament 3 (UT3) provides a sigh of relief for those of us that just like to blow shit up.
Like the other Unreal games before it, UT3 is designed to be a multi-player game, so the real fun is wreaking havoc in large groups online. All of the standard play types are included: Capture the Flag, Deathmatch and Team Deathmatch. Game elements are heavily based around speed and precision. Health and armour upgrades are littered all about the map. Ammunition is plentiful and dying results in an immediate re-spawn. The sci-fi weapons provide a decent range of variety from the “headshot” rewarding sniper rifle to the toxic waste dispensing bio cannon.
Visually UT3 is like a swift kick to the ear. Many of the 30+ maps are a mixture of the typical multiplayer dungeon and outdoor field which keeps environments varied during your murderous rampages. The latest and greatest texture and lighting effects put UT3 graphically on par with other high end PC shooters like Call of Duty 4, Crysis and Gears of War. For those of us with older systems the game will run acceptably after tweaking a few video settings. But On a high end PC this game looks so good you will probably find yourself stopped during game play inspecting all the details. Be warned that these moments of Zen are usually interrupted by and
WHY WHITE KIDS LOVE HIP HOP
By Bakari Kitwana Basic Civitas Books The former Executive Editor and Senior Editor of National Affairs for “The Source Magazine,” Kitwana is well versed in the fucked up racial politics of America. It is this depth of analysis that today informs “White Kids”, (aka - wankstas, wiggers, wannabes and the new reality of race in America). The underlying concept that “the national conversation about race has yet to catch up with the national reality” initially makes for a very engaging read, with vital issues about racial and cultural identity laid bare in chapters like - “Do white boys want to be black?” and “Are white suburban kids really Hip Hop’s primary audience?” Essentially the point is, although Hip Hop was created with the intention of racial unification through culture, much of the popular depiction of Hip Hop only serves to reinforce negative racial stereotypes. At the same time, in seeing Hip Hop as inclusive, some non-black heads are refusing to acknowledge the black origin of the culture, which amounts to racism. Part two dwells long on the paradox of Eminem (the “Elvis” of rap) and “The Source” fueled beef between him and Benzino over Em’s alleged racism (the sexism’s undeniable…). Kitwana gives him credit for emerging from an underprivileged underclass parallel to the experience of many black rappers and describes him as a product of “America’s new racial politics.” The trouble is that not once does Kitwana let Eminem speak for himself, or any white rapper… or any Hip Hop practitioner at all for that matter. The fact that he only interviewed dilettantes and hobbyists truly shows what he thinks of white Hip Hop heads. There have been groundbreaking words said recently by artists like Cage and El-P about refusing to uphold racial and cultural stereotypes that blow Kitwana’s P.C. analysis out of the water. The closing chapter, “Coalition building across race, Organizing the Hip Hop voting bloc”, works on the assumption that a conscious, Hip Hop motivated youth demographic can positively change voting trends. Typical American bullshit, well intentioned but so steeped in “Amerrrikkka” that he can’t see outside of the box. Speaking as a white MC, Hip Hop has always been a means of thinking beyond the binary choice between Tweedledum and Tweedledummer, and if you have any faith at all in the system you’ve already lost. Besides, no matter what, when the majority rules the minority always loses… Ultimately, the book deals more with America’s touchy feelings on race than with the explosive impact of Hip Hop on youth of all descriptions (race being a false concept, after all…), and eventually degenerates into a “we can make it together if we try” defense of electoral politics. Republicrats and Democrans, fuck ‘em all, like DPZ said – “meet me up on Capitol Hill, and we gone get up to some real shit!”. Peace, DMcC. By Dave “Corvid” McCallum
Design by - NA/wp762.com
Blowing Up The Set in 2008
This action might not be possible to undo. Are you sure you want to continue?
We've moved you to where you read on your other device.
Get the full title to continue reading from where you left off, or restart the preview.