Thursday, November 02, 2006

Killer Bees!

I used to hate hip-hop/rap, whatever you want to call it. I used to loath it. It wasn't music, It was all macho-gangser posturing(which admittedly a lot of it is, but a discussion of hip-hop and masculinity could and should be reserved for another time). Yet, deep down, I liked many of the songs. I would hear a single by Eminem or Jay-Z and begrudgingly admit to myself that, yes this is good. But I couldn't bring myself to immerse even a toe into the lagoon of rap like so many wiggers before. What would my punk rock constituents say?

So what changed my mind?

Well, besides a descent into music aestheticism.

The Wu-Tang Clan.

Nine versitile emcees combining into one mighty voltron-like force. Steeped in kung-fu movie esoteria and Five Percent mythology. And it doesn't hurt that they are some of the best rappers in the game today.

I think I can pinpoint the exact moment when my opinion changed. It was the first track on Ghostface Killah's (my current favorite emcee) solo album Supreme Clientele. Nutmeg is four minutes of surreal, abstract, stream of consciousness wordplay that doesn''t follow any conventional song structures. It was what I wanted rap to be. It, and I say this fully aware that is sounds very much like th ekind of hyperbole I'm known for, blew my mind.

I became a convert, not just to The Wu-Tang Clan, but to hip-hop in general. It has begun to integrate inself into my record collection, and I find myself eagerly anticipating new releases by Nas and Mos Def as much as releases by punk and indie bands.

If you were to listen 36 Chambers or Supreme Clientele (if you haven't already) I think you might too.


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