RAVEN MACK is a mystic poet-philosopher-artist of the Greater Appalachian unorthodox tradition who publishes zines & physical books & electronic books & music & photography & digital art & just generally whatever feels necessary to survive this deluded earth thru Rojonekku Word Fighting Arts survival systems (Version 69, establish 14 Feb 1973). Comments encouraged.

Wednesday, April 5

[HH3os] The Electronic Book of Black David Dreams trio

(1st round match-up 12 of 27)

I shall continue this thing without repent until the bitter end. It is warm – spring is not only in the air, it is in my fucking blood. Thus my heart pumps with the boom bap of the old school elders, and the gothic futurist treatises of Rammellzee make more sense than ever.

DJ Quik – Book of David
(released April 19, 2011; #29 on 2011 Pitchfork Albums of the Year list)
Did I mention with last DJ Quik-related project how I feel Quik should get a MacArthur Genius grant? If not, I have now. Musically, he’s on another level, and this album is no deviation from that norm. In fact, you get the sense at times Quik’s just fucking with people, he’s so good. Like the last track, with the extended silence to hide a buried track (as is often done in not-so-clever ways), which ends up being the illest shit ever. I still seek a high quality (lolol, or low) compendium of all the Quik instrumentals to drive around bumping, preferably in a convertible but not a natural convertible but the type of hooptie that looks like maybe it got driven underneath the trailer part of a tractor and trailer in Dukes of Hazzard/Blues Brother evasion tactical style, and thus was forced into customization to correct the necessary damage. (Fuck the police! ACAB!)
Quik is always a lyrical liability, although he has used his voice and delivery style to help cover that technical weakness in his style very well. (He even mentions finding the only word to rhyme with orange in a rap, then rhyming it with “door hinge”, which actually works if you let it.
The thing is, when Quik wants to get real about some shit – like being mad at his sister, or mad about people comparing him to Dr. Dre – it’s just like all those diss tracks he made against MC Eiht back in the day (you see, there’s no “g” in him is why he spells it that way, at least according to Quik at the time) or Denver (lolol at that verse in “Jus Lyke Compton” to this day, as he called THE WHOLE CITY A BITCH), he goes hard. So actually, even if he’s no lyrical miracle getting spiritual with the linguistical skills (as more *purely* regarded MCs are wont to do), he’s steady and consistent with: A) pissed at you diss raps, B) party time raps, and C) gonna have sex that involves oral in reciprocated fashion raps. He holds those lanes solid. And with the beats on some 21st Century Stanley Clarke/Herbie Hancock high fusion from space shit, I’ll allow for it all day long. (Seriously, Blue Note should give Quik a contract. DJ QUIK IS MY MADLIB, INTERNET!) All things considered, this album – even if it ain’t say shit (other than DJ Quik’s sister is a bitch) – runs a bright FOUR STARS!

AraabMuzik – Electronic Dreams
(released June 14, 2011; #40 on 2011 Pitchfork Albums of the Year list)
Not entirely clear how this was labelled as hip hop, but it was, and here it is. I am disillusioned by this early foray into electronic music masquerading as hip hop, and though I will not outright condemn electronic music, as I have offspring who thoroughly enjoy this type of music, perhaps I am a little too primitively boom baptist when I say I fear the larger consequences behind this type of music, which is designed not as stabs against real world’s cold cruelty, but a more pharmaceutical fog to envelope reality with. If one is not careful, this type of foggy music gets into your bloodstream, and then there is not action that can remove it. The cybertronic effects start to metastasize as copper readings in your bloodstream first, but the copper is able to breach the blood-brain barrier as well, and starts to metastasize in the fissures of your brain as well. It sneaks down your spinal cord through the fluid and starts to leech out into nerve endings throughout your tantric torso. Next thing you know, you are a fucking cybertron yourself, and you begin to justify cybertronic thinking, and feel more at ease in an environment of machines (even if broken) than you do among organic beings (especially when broken). This will eventually be the demise of humanity, which ordinarily might be a good thing, but it’s not organic. The end of human civilization should be an organic act of nature resisting mankind asserting too much metaphysical dominion. Maybe that’s what climate change is all about, who knows? But humanity destroying itself entirely and leaving behind artificially intelligent pseudo-humans is not the cataclysm this universe needs (although it might be the one we give it). ZERO STARS, for eternity.

Shabazz Palaces – Black Up
(released June 28, 2011; #14 on 2011 Pitchfork Albums of the Year list)
I really enjoy the Shabazz Palaces, but apparently I have mostly listened to all their other work, and not this one, because I recognized very little of it. The weird thing about this album is it sounds like there’s a party in an apartment on the third floor, but you live on the first floor, and aren’t invited. The production is weirdly muffled, which does nothing to counter the Artist Formerly Known as Butterfly’s whisper rap syndrome. (I have whatever that fake “hate quiet sounds” disease is that social media memes have falsely validated.) I mean I dig it, but not nearly as much as Lese Majesty, which is probably unfair to do, being there’s so much crap in this stupid Pitchfork project that is pure crap. But I have to do something to separate Black Up from The Book of David. THREE STARS!


THE WINNER: If I can find a reason to advance DJ Quik in this thing, I always will, hoping to eventually sink (sync?) into hydrocodone summertime stupor, blasting Quik-strumentals through the back yard, using the old 1970s speakers that weight a thousand pounds each I found at the dump one time. High fidelity, motherfuckers; high fidelity.

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