Five Songs, 6/7/2022
Five Songs

Five Songs, 6/7/2022

Boogie Down Productions, "I'm Still #1"

The first two BDP records are landmarks in rap. BDP managed to both bring in a lot of the hardcore style that would later be pushed further into gangsta rap, but also introduced a lot of the socially conscious elements that would be picked up by acts like the Native Tongues. The second BDP record in particular demonstrated that KRS-One was still a force even after the tragic death of Scott La Rock between the two albums. You can draw a straight line from this to so much of 90s rap, but KRS-One's delivery is so strong that it sounds good on its own even without the historical interest.

Tar, "Mach Song"

After two LPs and a handful of singles with Amphetamine Reptile Records, Tar moved up the independent records ladder by signing with Touch & Go. The first album from that partnership, Toast, finds the band with their clearest recording ever, but still preserving some of the essential murkiness of their sound. There's a certain distance to the vocals in particular that they would have across all their records. In terms of the music, alas, this is probably my least favorite album from them. It's not bad, but it does feel a little caught between worlds. The AmRep records are gritty and noisier, and Over and Out has the band in a more melodic mode, but this record is a bit of an ugly duckling. I still like it, but I'd go for the records on either side of it first.

Holy Fuck, "Milkshake"

Everybody loves the song "Milkshake" from Holy Fuck!

Belle and Sebastian, "Fuck This Shit"

The B&S record I always forget exists, Storytelling makes an appearance here, and I will have re-forgotten about the album once it is done playing.

Dead Rider, "Feb Five"

There's something elemental about Todd Rittmann's vocal style, which helped propel U.S. Maple's spastic music to a whole extra level. Rittmann's next band, Dead Rider, isn't quite as off as U.S. Maple was (what could be?), but because his brain is fundamentally cracked, the band is as well. I give it the heartiest possible endorsement, of course.

Joshua Buergel
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