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Back Cover #74

 

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Some of the good stuff from issue #74

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

The Bloodhound Gang - Hooray for Boobies (Republic)

Has there ever been a better name for an album? Can three words sum up a greater truth? The Bloodhound Gang's vocalist and lyricist Jimmy Pop has whipped up loads more fucked up little rock/hip hop ditties, such as "Vagina" (which is preceded by a phone call to his mother asking for help with words that rhyme with vagina), "Ballad of Chasey Lain" (she's a porn star who has often been hoorayed for her boobies) and what should be the next great American expression, "Yummy Down on This". They even do a tribute to Falco. About damn time someone did. Musically, this album's got more rock than a cocaine pusher in Harlem, with a touch of hip hop and a dab of '80s dance flavor. But make sure to listen to the well-crafted, pop culture-heavy lyrics. Damn funny shit. 9.5

I Hope You Die (328k .wav)

 

Blackalicious - Nia ( Quannum Projects)

It's a shame that so many people think of Puff Daddy, Will Smith, and Jay Z when they think of hip hop. All those little kids listening to Puff Daddy who never even heard of Sting. Damn. Thankfully, there are groups like Blackalicious (say it out loud, it's fun!). Blackalicious' Chief Xcel and The Gift of Gab rhyme with an incredible, laid-back flow. The beats are the dope shit you'd expect. And there's a touch of soul and '70s groove. This is their first full-length (Nia means "purpose" in Swahili you probably knew that), but you may have heard them on the Quannum Spectrum cd. If not, get it, dammit. Some of the Quannum folks pop up for an appearance, like DJ Shadow and Latyrx. Blackalicious. Say it. Listen to it. 9

Deception (276k .wav)

 

Kid Koala - Carpal Tunnel Syndrome (Ninja Tune)

Kid Koala seems to be all about value. Not only do you get the cd (as you'd expect upon purchase), but you also get his amply illustrated comic book, and an Asteroids-like game for your computer (you get to blow up bad records). Pretty sweet, eh? But my only real complaint comes before even hitting play. The cd is only 38 minutes. I just would've hoped for a bit more music. Well, what can you do? The music you do get ranges from what seems to be Money Mark-influenced funky '70s grooves to Kid Koala's own sense of pure fun and silliness. This is not an album for the masses, because the masses are asses. No, this is for those who appreciate the turntable genre. You can practically see Kid Koala smiling as he's putting these tracks together, scratching likes he's got a bad rash, distorting records, and cutting together hilarious dialogue samples: "Do you know what that was?" "I think that is an insane man pulling the hair out of a baboon's back." "No, that was a blender. I know you didn't have blenders back in those days." "No, we didn't, but we did drink." Aptly named tracks like "Drunk Trumpet" and "Like Irregular Chickens" should give you an idea of what else you can expect. Play it loud at the office and baffle your Limp Bizkit-Backstreet Boys-Billy Joel-listening co-workers. 9

A Night at the Nufonia (52k, .mov)

 

Arling & Cameron - Music for Imaginary Films (Emperor Norton)

What a great concept. Arling & Cameron would've loved to have written music for films during the '60s and '70s. It's too late now, but they made the music anyway. And just listening, you can practically imagine the films they'd score. Particularly "Hashi", which has a big Austin Powers/James Bond sound, and tells the tale of a drug-sniffing canine. The music easily conjures up scenes of that crazy, witty dog in action. Some tracks, like the aforementioned, act as theme songs, and others act as general instrumentals which usually fills out most soundtracks (have you heard the whole Shaft soundtrack? Yikes!). 8.5

 

Aphrodite (V2)

You know when you just feel like shit and can't make it out to the clubs? Or you're feeling down and want something to reenergize you? Or you know that feeling you get when it's freezing out and you've got no jacket or pants on? Well, Aphrodite's drum 'n' bass album is perfect for all those times. It's upbeat, pretty much the entire album, but particularly on "King of the Beats" and "Listen to the Rhythm." Crank this bad boy and turn your own place into a club (just invite some girls with baby-tees and pigtails and get a fat-ass bouncer to fully frisk your friends). You'll be boppin' around like you're steppin' on hot coals, but without the pain (unless you throw a knee out). 9.5

King of the Beats ( 328k .wav)

 

The Best of Bruce Haack, Esther Nelson and the Dimension 5 Label - Listen. Compute. Rock Home. (Emperor Norton Records)

When you were a kid did you run around and make motorcycle noises with your friends and pretend you were cruisin' the streets or being cops? Or did you sit in front of the television and let your imagination rot? In the '60s, Bruce Haack and Esther Nelson made records that kept kids' imaginations working overtime. Their Dimension 5 label refers to the fifth dimension imagination. How did they exercise kids' minds? Well, Haack played some crazy music with his electric keyboard, with influences of rock, jazz, ethnic styles and more. They threw in a few sound effects. Then he and Nelson alternated with spoken word and occasional singing about all sorts of things, from how to ride a motorcycle to taking a magic carpet ride to being a clock. I've always wanted to be a clock, especially when I'm a grandfather. Combined with the music, their unique style can even be enjoyed by older folks. Sometimes they go on a little longer than they needed to, but I guess that gave kids more time in that particular fantasy land. This was no Mr. Rogers or Captain Kangaroo crap. What a great thing to reintroduce to a new generation. 9

Motorcycle Ride (260k .wav)

 

Binger the Voyager - Sweet Taste of Nothing (OMW)

You know, there are a lot of electronic groups out there. A lot of them start to sound the same, kinda like what happens in every other genre. Lots of copycats that just plain suck. Binger the Voyager is hardly one of them. In fact, this is one of the more refreshing electronic albums I've heard in a while. Admittedly, a few tracks feel a bit typical, but for the most part, this is just a beautiful piece of work it's like a really gorgeous woman who has a weird birthmark on her back. The songs are melodic and rhythmic and the soft vocals are reminiscent of Underworld, only more dream-like. No block-rockin' beats here, just pure laid-back goodness. 10

Shoot (300k .wav)

 

Death In Vegas - The Contino Sessions (Time Bomb/Concrete)

If you've ever been to Vegas, you know there's a whole lotta gamblin' goin' on. People are throwin' money away like snotty tissues. Death In Vegas is better suited for the losers in Vegas, or just your casual listener. The band's style is melancholic and dreamy. And it grows on you like acne on a teenager at Mickey D's but in a good way. Some tracks are just instrumental, but on others the vocals take it to a new level of darkness, particularly in "Aisha". Iggy Pop does the guest vocals about having just met Aisha but wanting to let her know he's a murderer. It's always good to let someone know your criminal tendencies before things go too far, because they're gonna find out eventually and then you'll just feel like a real ass. 10

Aisha (328k .wav)