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Some of the good stuff from issue #15

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

The Allies - D-Day (Asphodel)

When you talk about super turntablist crews, you think Invisibl Skratch Piklz and X-Ecutioners. Don't forget the Allies, featuring two-time DMC champion Craze, former champion A-Trak, and possible future champions. All five members boast their skills on individual tracks, and come together on others. It's about what you'd expect scratching like they're allergic to a nearby cat and rib cage shakin' bass. 9

 

Logan's Sanctuary - Original Soundtrack (Emperor Norton)

Somehow, through their ingenious searching techniques, the folks at Emperor Norton Records have dug up the lost soundtrack to Logan's Sanctuary, an incredible sci-fi flick from the late '70s. This movie had domed cities, Robo-Sex machines, a place called Metropia, and of course, antidotes. I recently picked up the re-release on DVD, which captures the incredible cinematography in widescreen. Logan's Sanctuary inspired such classics as Battlestar: Galactica, and The Last Starfighter. My favorite part was always the middle. But the end was good too. The soundtrack fits the era with it's funky, electronic grooves. The music practically tells the story, but if you don't feel like hearin' stories, it's pretty cool background music to just chill out to. Plus, you'll impress all your friends. 8.5

Semiautomatic (5RC)

Much like a fresh hot s'mores, this is quite a treat. The duo of Semiautomatic features turntablism, instrumentation, synthesizers, and smooth female vocals. It's some pretty darn cool shit. The beats flow like traffic when everyone's left the city as Semiautomatic takes you on an exciting, sometimes sexy, and always interesting journey. Get lost in the sonic sounds of "Space Toys" and then rock to "Voodoo that Bitch". They've merged different styles and created a sound that keeps you pleasantly surprised throughout. 9

 

Mike Ladd - Welcome to the Afterfuture (Ozone)

First off, it's always pleasant to be welcomed somewhere. So Mike Ladd kicks things off very politely. Musically, it's pretty darn pleasant too. Ladd's style of hip hop invokes funk bass lines, smooth rhyming skills, occasional spoken word, beats, and a dose of electronica, all giving it a fresh feel unlike most of the crap you're liable to hear out there in the mainstream. The album's pace seamlessly goes up and down, keeping just the right tempo all the way through. No boredom here. Mike Ladd's doing things his way, evolving the art one step further. 10

 

Quasimoto - The Unseen (Stones Throw Records)

You know how much fun it is to suck in helium and surprise friends and family by talking like Alvin or one of the other Chipmunks? Well combine that pleasure with the joy of rapping, and you get Stones Throw's Quasimoto. At least, that's what it seems like. I don't think he really sucked in helium every time he layed down a rhyme, that would kill a whole lot of brain cells, and based on "Astro-Travelin" I think he finds more entertaining ways of doing that. Quasimoto first appeared on Peanut Butter Wolf's My Vinyl Weighs a Ton, and I thought, "Hey, this guy's different and cool, I enjoy listening to his rhyming techniques." But would a full album of helium/deviated septum-midget-sounding-style MCing be tolerable? Yes. Quasimoto gets help from Madlib, who also produced the album. Madlib's laid-back, I'm-about-to-fall-asleep style balances out Quasimoto nicely. You'll love listening to him urge his feet and legs to run faster on "Come on Feet", discussing "Microphone Mathematics", and giving props on "Boom Music". It's 24 tracks of dope beats, loops, and good ol' fashioned fun. 10

 

Ween - White Pepper (Elektra)

Gene and Dean Ween have always done what they wanted. And they've done it well. They've jumped genres all over albums. They've made a country album. Now they've made their most mellow album, with the exception of the rockin' "Stroker Ace". But even when Ween takes it easy, they still manage to conjure up some nice tunes stamped with their sense of humor. Some are a little loungy, and then there's the steel drums on the catchy "Bananas and Blow", about a guy stuck in his cabana, livin' on bananas and blow. Yeesh, you know how that is! 8

 

Amon Tobin - Supermodified (Ninja Tune)

If you don't have a subwoofer, get one, dammit. Supermodified is best enjoyed when you can feel the deep bass layered throughout much of this album, particularly on tracks like "Golfer vs. Boxer" and "Saboteur". Tobin's music is dark and haunting, yet beautiful and rhythmic, and sometimes just a little weird, like the saliva swishing sounds courtesy of beatboxer Quadraceptor on "Precursor." Listen for yourself. It's worth it. 9

 

 

Issue 74 reviews