Five Songs, 11/30/2019
Five Songs

Five Songs, 11/30/2019

Killer Mike, "R.A.P. Music"

I often refer to Killer Mike's R.A.P. Music as "Run The Jewels 0", featuring as it does the core duo from RtJ. The approach that El-P takes on the beats is definitely on the continuum that would develop into RtJ, and of course, Killer Mike is on point. The only real difference between this and a full RtJ album is that El-P stays off the mic. Every fan of RtJ owes it to themselves to get this record.

The Chemical Brothers, "It Doesn't Matter"

Powered by the massive hit "Block Rockin' Beats", the Chemical Brothers had a moment in the late 90s. The rest of the record wasn't as obviously commercial as that song, with it being more of a hardcore techno record along the lines of this track. It's an excellent example of the form, so it is worthy of its fame, but I do wonder if people got what they were expecting.

Pink Floyd, "Outside the Wall"

The denouement of The Wall, this song makes zero sense at all outside the context of that record. I do love singing along to this corny-ass album, though.

Kno, "Justify My Thug"

There was a cottage industry in radically remixing Jay-Z's The Black Album, with Danger Mouse's The Gray Album (mashing up Jay-Z with the Beatles) being the most famous. But maybe the best one is Kno's (of CunninLynguists), which just re-imagines the whole thing with interesting beats.

The Grifters, "My Apology"

Ain't My Lookout, the record where the Grifters went from a tiny indie to the relatively huge Sub Pop, was a step back from the previous two. The chaos of previous records was toned down a little bit, and not to great effect. The arrangements are more lush, but again, I'm not sure that that helped the music. The lo-fi, ramshackle nature of the tunes was part of the charm. But I also think that, even if you did dirty up these songs, they still wouldn't be quite as good. It's certainly not a bad record, but it's not where to start.

Joshua Buergel
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