Spoek Mathambo/Big K.R.I.T.
Think Positive--Or Not
Spoek Mathambo: Father Creeper (Sub Pop)
Although I slotted this Soweto-raised 27-year-old's 2010 Mshini Wam as promising kwaito electro, I never imagined it promised a hip-hop record so dark it reveals his labelmate Shabazz Palaces for the arty pothead we can assume he is. Contra the nervous crits who claim to hear a "palpable feeling of hope" or "summery highlife melodies" (highlife, eh? I've heard of that‑-African, right?), even the sweet opener about the sexual maturation of a guy who was feeling it before his pubes came in ends ominously. After that come evocations of oppression only more brutal because they're sometimes dissociated‑-blood diamonds, why we hate our crap jobs, the deadening surrender of the tricking American hip-hop makes light of. The music suits because it's also dissociated‑-beaty enough to keep your foot tapping and your subconscious involved, but devoid of the escapist joy that is the miracle of so much Afropop produced from equally horrendous daily struggles. A
Big K.R.I.T.: 4Eva N a Day (free download)
He was just Kritikal, but the Mississippi underground had trouble pronouncing that word‑-check out the consonant-averse "1986" intro to understand why‑-so he made it Big K.R.I.T., claimed it stood for King Remembered in Time, and continued a rapping career that imagined high school coaching as a fallback. No hip-hopper has ever been bigger on getting up when you're down and making every minute count. Could get tiresome, but on a no-cameos mixtape Def Jam couldn't clear, his proudly drawled, lucidly conceived preachments go undefeated. Almost every soulful track grew on me, with the clincher "Down & Out," one of his periodic explanations of why sometimes he sips and smokes instead of trying yet again. A MINUS
As I recall you associated him with the "twisted little cult that wastes time fawning over [the] deeply wretched." Then a page or so later you complained about claims that you're rude or obnoxious, which makes your request for mercy a bit funny.
I will let everyone else decide if this is an accurate representation or not.
Sorry Irene. Alex's shoegaze comment caught my attention. I didn't think Christgauians liked shoegaze.
sangfreud- This i got from Wide Right's Facebook page
The Triumphant return of Wide Right- Friday May 11th at Hanks Saloon, 46 3rd Ave Brooklyn, 8:30-11:30.
Hope this helps, wish I could go but i'm in Seattle. Hopefully some of you will go and show our collective support for this under appreciated band
aahhhh goddammit. we we're considering "Through the Wire" as 2003? I mean, i know it was released as a single then, and so was "Slow Jamz," but the album was 2004 (which i thought was our governing criteria) and it was prevalent in P&J's 2004 poll, not 2003.
cuz if themz two 'Ye singles were game, the front end of my list would be very different.
about the blogger
Starting in 1967, Robert Christgau has covered popular music for The Village Voice, Esquire, Blender, Playboy, Rolling Stone, and many other publications. He teaches in New York University's Clive Davis Department of Recorded Music, maintains a comprehensive website at robertchristgau.com, and has published five books based on his journalism. He has written for MSN Music since 2006.
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