Tag: Kool Keith

New Video: Sav Killz’s Ode to Summertime in Brooklyn

Born Jamel Hampton, Sav Killz is a Brooklyn-based emcee, who grew up in both Flatbush and Bedford-Stuyvesant, and initially was involved in the city’s hip hop scene as a graffiti writer, known for his tag Savage. In 1997, Hampton started rapping on the block under Savage Killa, based on his graffiti tag, which he later shorted to Sav Killz. Interestingly, Hampton got his professional part as part of the Wu-Tang Clan cypher, honing his skills at 36 Chambers Studio and Restoration Plaza, and he was part of the Sunz of Man and Brooklyn Zu cyphers.

Since the early 00s, Hampton has released a number of mixtapes that have received attention both across the city’s indie hip-hop scene and the blogosphere. And building upon a growing profile, he has opened for the likes of Kool Keith, Jadakiss, Slick Rick, Saigon, AZ, The Beatnuts, Rakim and Foxy Brown. Earlier this year, Sav Killz released his Bangers and B-Sides 2 mixtape, “hosted” by his longtime producer and collaborator DJ J-Ronin — and the mixtape’s latest single is the Camouflage Monk-produced “Brooklyn Summer,” which is centered around a looped, slow-burning, Roy Ayers-like jazz-fusion sample featuring twinkling Rhodes electric piano, big horns and a sinuous bass line over which Sav Killz rhymes about how Brooklyn always keeps it 100 every single day; but underneath that there’s a nostalgia about hanging out in the park on a glorious summer day with your homies, listening to your favorite tunes, while someone barbecues.

Directed by R.Hendrix, the recently released video was shot at Brooklyn Bridge Park during the Team Magnificent Get Low photo shoot and evokes summer days hanging out in the park with the homies.

New Video: Dr. Octagon’s Surrealistic Take on Kung Fu

Known as a co-founder of renowned and legendary hip-hop act Ultramagnetic MCs and for a lengthy and uncompromising solo career in which he has taken up a number of aliases and personas, while collaborating with an array of emcees and producers, Kool Keith is arguably one of hip-hop’s most idiosyncratic and eccentric personalities and artists — and throughout his incredibly prolific recording career, he has continually perfected and expanded upon his inimitable flow, full of surreal and fantastical tangents, grimly violent and nightmarish imagery, sexual and pop cultural references while effortlessly and frequently switching perspectives, moods and points of view within the same song.

Now, if you’ve been frequenting this site, you know that I’ve written quite a bit about Kool Keith and his various solo releases, reissues and collaborations but interestingly, the imitable emcee along with collaborators Dan The Automator and DJ Qbert have teamed to revive his alter ego Dr. Octagon 20+ years after the critically applauded, revolutionary debut effort  Dr. Octagonecologyst. “Octagon Octagon,” the first single from the trio’s long-awaited Dr. Octagonecologyst follow up, Moosebumps: an exploration into modern day horripilation is a bit of a return to form for the trio — but possessing a frenzied urgency that could only come from marathon 24-hour recording sessions at Dan The Automator’s studio. Kool Keith reprises his lecherous and hopelessly incorrigible Dr. Octagon, who has insane sexual exploits, performs even odder surgeries but with an impossible, outlandish surrealism that’s at points absolutely hilarious, flat out weird and other times horrifying, sometimes within the turn of a phrase; in fact, Moosebumps: an exploration into modern day horripilation’s first single “Octagon Octagon” was wryly intelligent and absurdly satirical commentary on capitalism, branding, advertising and free, as Kool Keith rhymes about Dr. Octagon being shamelessly opportunistic and greedy, putting his name on rice and beens, gasoline, tampons and anything else that would pay him over a minimalist yet menacing production, which emphasizes the Kool Keith’s imitable, almost Dada-esque flow.

“Flying Waterbed,” Moosebumps’ latest single features a slow-burning, production that’s oddly reminiscent of Scott Walker’s Scott Walker 3 as it features soaring strings, a sinuous bass line, a looped and shimmering guitar line, a mournful yet regal horn line and stuttering drums, and as a result it possesses a hallucinogenic, dream-like air. Throughout Kool Keith rhymes in absurdist non-sequiturs to create punchlines with surreal imagery — “busted kneecaps like Kobe,” “nasal so big I can fly aircraft up your nose,” references to space ships, “I’m a Martian with a Stephen Curry face” “tube socks, looking like Dr. J.” It’s drugged out as fuck, yet strangely mournful and sexy — and perhaps even more so with Interpol’s Paul Banks singing the hook.

Directed by Joel Knoernschild, the recently released video for “Flying Waterbed” is centered around the imagery of old Kung Fu movies; in fact, it features Roy Chen performing Kung Fu with a tea kettle, much to the annoyance of two unimpressed customers and in several gorgeous yet urban setups.

New Audio: Kool Keith Dan The Automator and DJ Qbert Revive Dr. Octagon for Surreal and Satirical First Single in Over 20 Years

Known as a co-founder of renowned and legendary hip-hop act Ultramagnetic MCs and for a lengthy and uncompromising solo career in which he has taken up a number of aliases and personas, while collaborating with an array of emcees and producers, Kool Keith is arguably one of hip-hop’s most idiosyncratic and eccentric personalities and artists — and throughout his incredibly prolific recording career, he has continually perfected and expanded upon his inimitable flow, full of surreal and fantastical tangents, grimly violent and nightmarish imagery, sexual and pop cultural references while effortlessly and frequently switching perspectives, moods and points of view within the same song.

Now, if you’ve been frequenting this site, you know that I’ve written quite a bit about Kool Keith and his various solo releases, reissues and collaborations but interestingly, the imitable emcee along with collaborators Dan The Automator and DJ Qbert have teamed to revive his alter ego Dr. Octagon 20+ years after the critically applauded, revolutionary debut effort  Dr. Octagonecologyst. “Octagon Octagon,” the first single from the trio’s long-awaited Dr. Octagonecologyst follow up, Moosebumps: an exploration into modern day horripilation is a bit of a return to form for the trio — but possessing a frenzied urgency that could only come from marathon 24-hour recording sessions at Dan The Automator’s studio.  And while reprising a lecherous and hopelessly incorrigible character with his off-kilter and imitable flow, the new single is arguably one of the smartest and most absurd yet satirical commentaries on capitalism, branding and advertising, as Kool Keith’s Dr. Octagon reveals himself as shamelessly opportunistic, putting his name to tampons, rice and beans, gasoline and anything else he could — even if it was ridiculous, because why not? Sonically, Kool Keith — er Dr. Octagon’s flow is paired with a minimalist production that manages to be both menacing and surreal, emphasizing the character’s surrealistic flow while featuring twinkling keys and DJ Qbert’s incredible scratching.

New Video: The Surreal and Lysergic Visuals for Jesse Medina’s Woozy Collaboration with Kool Keith

Jesse Medina is an up-and-coming San Jose, CA-born, Bay Area-based emcee whose life experience has helped influence him and his sound. Growing up, he moved from place to place and was raised by various family members in different socioeconomic situations and different environments, frequently hanging out with skaters, stoners, hippies, punk rockers and others, and as a result he has an incredibly unique style. Medina’s latest single, which was released through Granjer Records, “Chasin’ Franklin” features the up-and-coming Bay Area-based emcee collaborating with the renowned and legendary Kool Keith, as the duo trade bars over a slurring and sloshing Mr. Aeks production comprised of layers of bleating horns, sputtering boom bap beats.

Unsurprisingly, the drunkenly slurring track is specifically meant to be a celebration of excess and hedonism as both emcees make copious references to drinking, drug use, womanizing and misbehaving, as well as the prerequisite braggadocio about how dope they are as emcees; but what makes the track wild to me, is that both emcees trade menacing and surrealistic verses, full of left-field, complex inner and outer rhyme schemes, with each emcee weaving their verses within the mix like two wobbling and tumbling drunks.

Directed by Matt Posada of Film Block Productions is a hazily lysergic video, rooted around lines like “Acid trippin,’ fuckin’ in the kitchen,” featuring some bizarre, yet sensual imagery and a guest appearance by Kool Keith’s alter ego, Dr. Octagon.   

Jesse Medina is an up-and-coming San Jose, CA-born, Bay Area-based emcee whose life experience has helped influence him and his sound. Growing up, he moved from plan to place and was raised by various family members in different socioeconomic situations and different environments, frequently hanging out with skaters, stoners, hippies, punk rockers and others, and as a result he has an incredibly unique style. To celebrate his upcoming collaboration with Granjer Records, Medina released a new single, “Chasin’ Franklin,” featuring a guest spot from the renowned Kool Keith — and the track features the emcees rhyming over slurring and sloshing Mr. Aeks production comprised of layers of bleating horns, sputtering boom bap beats.

Unsurprisingly, the drunkenly slurring track is specifically meant to be a celebration of excess and hedonism as both emcees make references to drug use, drinking, womanizing and the like, while also talking about how dope they are as emcees. Naturally, Kool Keith’s verse will further cement the legend’s reputation for crafting uncannily surreal, out of left field verses with complex inner and outer rhyme schemes, while Medina’s fiery verses manage to weave in and out of the mix like a wobbling drunk. But underneath that, the song also serves as a reminder of several different yet necessary things — namely that there are a number of artists and producers, who are actively challenging and pushing the boundaries of what hip hop should sound like, and perhaps more important that dope emcees can spit bars over anything and it’ll be pretty fucking amazing.

 

New Video: Kool Keith and Edo. G Team Up for the Brooding “Tired”

Equally known as a co-founder of renowned and legendary hip-hop act Ultramagnetic MCs and for a lengthy and uncompromising solo career in which he has taken up a number of aliases and personas, while collaborating with an array of emcees and producers, Kool Keith is arguably one of hip-hop’s most unique and strangest artists as he’s spent his prolific recording career continually perfecting and expanding upon his inimitable flow, full of surreal and fantastical tangents, grimly violent and nightmarish imagery and pop cultural references while frequently and effortlessly switching perspectives, moods and points of view within the same song. Kool Keith’s latest effort, 2016’s Future Magnetic features the Bronx-born and-based emcee collaborating with Ras Kass, Atmosphere’s Slug, MF Doom, Dirt Nasty and a lengthy list of others.

Now, if you had been frequenting this site over the course of last year, you may recall that I wrote about album “World Wide Lamper,” a single consisting of a menacingly sparse and hypotonic production featuring twinkling synths, and subtly propulsive drum programming paired with Kool Keith, B.A.R.S. Murre and Dirt Nasty trading braggadocio-filled bars full of insane punchlines that make references to pop culture, the profane, the grisly violent and the surreal, and “Super Hero,” a collaboration with the renowned producer Madlib that featured a production consisting of wobbling, undulating synths, stuttering drum programming and looped chimes paired with Kool Keith crafting a warped, comic book world of eccentric and badass anti-heroes.
Future Magnetic’s latest single “Tired,” pairs an atmospheric and moody production featuring ethereal synths, wobbling low end and bursts bluesy guitar with Kool Keith and Edo. G rhyming about being world weary, under-appreciated, dealing with hateful, jealous people, of fucked up socioeconomic circumstances and industry bullshit, but while somehow still not losing the knowledge of what they’re worth and why they got into music in the first place — to express themselves and their irrepressible need to be creative at all costs. And in typical Kool Keith fashion, he does so with his imitable sense of wit and humor with Edo G. bringing in the

Directed by Wayne Campbell, the recently released, cinematically shot music video for “Tired” features some gorgeous footage of various parts of New York — in particular the F.D.R. near the Williamsburg and Manhattan Bridges, Kool Keith vamping and hanging out in a hotel room, Edo. G in a lonely, late night club and Keith and Edo on the streets. And while being a view of decadent lifestyle of the artists in question, there’s an underlying sadness to it all, as there’s a sense of lonely and weary people doing things to distract from their own loneliness and despair.

Although he’s known as a co-founder of renowned, old school hip-hop act, Ultramagnetic MCs and for a lengthy  solo career, in which he has taken up a number of aliases and personas while perfecting and expanding upon an imitable flow full of surrealistic and fantastic tangents, grim and nightmarishly violent imagery and pop cultural references — namely comic books and cartoons, Kool Keith  may arguably be one of hip-hop’s most uncompromisingly weird and challenging artists. And interestingly enough 2016 may have also been one of the biggest years for The Bronx-based emcee, as the long-lost full-length effort Pimp to Eat from his collaborative project Analog Brothers with Ice-T, Pimp Rex, Marc Live and Black Silver was released earlier this year, along with his latest solo effort Future Magnetic, which had the incredibly prolific emcee collaborating with Ras KassAtmosphere’s Slug, MF Doom and Dirt Nasty.

In fact, last year, I wrote about “World Wide Lamper,” a single consisted of a menacingly sparse and hypnotic production featuring winkling synths and subtle yet propulsive drum programming paired with Kool Keith, B.A.R.S. Murre and Dirt Nasty trading braggadocio-filled bars full of insane punchlines that make references to pop culture, the profane, the grisly violent and the surreal. That single was quickly  “Super Hero,”a single that pairs a production consisting of wobbling and undulating synths, stuttering drum programming and looped chiming cymbals around a wildly infectious hook with two renowned emcees trading verses full of super-heroes, villains and anti-heroes maneuvering through a comic book-styled universe.

L’Orange an up-and-coming, Nashville, TN-based producer, who collaborated with Mr. Lif on his The Life & Death Of Scenery, released a free EP Koala and is about to go our on tour with Wax Tailor, and in his free time, the up-and-coming producer remixed Kool Keith’s and MF Doom’s “Super Hero.” And with the L’Orange remix, the Tennessean producer pairs two of hip-hop’s most acclaimed emcees ridiculous rhyme schemes with classic, super hero/comic book dialogue and a production featuring twinkling keys, some old-timey clang and clatter, a distorted old school-leaning blues vocal sample, and tweeter and woofer rattling 808-like beats  – while retaining the song’s hook. And in some way, the L’Orange remix manages to boldly and mischievously evoke film noirs, with an insane yet impeccably done ballroom caper — and you can probably picture the heroes (or shall I say, anti-heroes, in this case) narrowly yet confidently escaping capture.

 

 

 

New Video: Check out the Surreal Animated Video for Kool Keith’s Collaboration with MF Doom and Madlib

“Super Hero,” Kool Keith’s latest single has the renowned and prolific emcee teaming up with MF Doom to trade incredibly visual and narrative bars full of surreal and disconnected pop culture and comic book references over a Madlib production consisting of wobbling and undulating synths, stuttering drum programming and looped chimes around the song’s infectious hook to create a warped comic book world of anti-heroes being incredibly eccentric and badass.

The recently released animated video pokes fun at old cartoons while employing neon bright stop motion animation and Claymation to a trippy, mind-blowing effect.