Wednesday, December 31, 2014

Quick! One Last New Release for 2014!

(Happy New Year from my new roommates)
My first thought was: I'm not just going to add to the infinite pile of year end top ten lists with today's post. No way, not gonna do it. So what should I do? Pontificate about how much better/worse 2014 was than 2013? Summarize every post I made over the course of the year? Write a retrospective on "A Surf M.C. New Year?" [Note to self: that's actually a good one; save that idea for 2016!] No, what we need most right now is just a good, new release. And fortunately, one just arrived in the mail last week.

A new, limited (100 copies - mine is #67) cassette release from Megakut Records. It's a split/ double A-side release, two EPs roughly 15 minutes each. Dankslob on one side, and J-Eazy & Brycon on the other.

Who the hell is Dankslob? No, you're right not to recognize the name; but you should recognize the actual artists. Dankslob is Luke Sick's latest project. Pretty much every time he works with somebody new, he makes a new group name for it... Underbucket/ Grand Invincible, Brougham, Get the Hater, The Disturbers, Rime Force, Motel Crew, Yole Boys, Grand Killa Con... all these groups can be explained as "Luke Sick and ____." And this is the latest, and this time he's teamed up with G-Pek, the producer who made Z-Man's Don't Forget To Brag. Now that's a sweet match!

and it really works here. G-Pek really switches tones to work with Luke; he's got a real feel for tailoring his sound to match Luke's vibe. As dark and dank as their name and cover art imply, full of soundbites from The Killing of a Chinese Bookie (plus a little Barfly.and a few assorted clips), and Luke sounding as worn and world weary as ever. So many rappers seemed to have peaked around their second or third albums, but Luke just keeps getting better as he gets older, aging into perfectly tragic Hemmingway-style raconteur:

"Pop shit,
And loogie spit on everyone.
We on the couch.
Tell the bitch to shut its fucking mouth.
We like to slouch,
Think about how it's turning out.
We take our time;
Greg Pek knew this shit had clout.
I wasn't caring
'Till the hash all runnin' out.
Now we out,
But my feet hurt; I got the gout.
Them Earls bounce;
Suckers front like they really down.
But they never was;
They just some pussy clowns.
I made enough to eat and sleep;
That's how I got down.
I ate ribs,
Tried to live at the titty bar.
Don't even trip,
Holmes, ounce in the jelly jar."

I was all set to be disappointed, then, when I flipped this tape over. I mean, that would be fine, since Dankslob was perfect and more than worth the purchase in and of itself. But I've never heard of J-Eazy, this was gonna be some new jack piggybacking on Luke Sick. I know Brycon, though. He's the other half of Grand Killa Con with Luke Sick, and that was a solid album. So gotta give it a fair shot, at least.

Well, it's pretty good, too! I prefer the A-side (here's hoping Dankslob isn't a one-off!), but Damaged Goods, as its titled, is a cool bonus B-side. It's got a whole different feel to it, at once scrappier and more indie, but also bouncier and more upbeat. Think of it this way: if Dankslob is vintage Wu-Tang; Damaged Goods is vintage Killarmy. And just like with those Wu spin-off groups, it certainly doesn't hurt that the original Wu always drops by for a profile-rising guest appearance. Yeah, Luke Sick drops in and adds a verse and hook fora song called "Shattered Up" near the end (there's no track-listing or anything with this tape; but both groups posted song titles on their bandcamps).

This tape is really, really good. I mean, these Gurp City cats are consistently good; but I would even put this above their average. And like all their tapes, they're so well priced ($8, which includes shipping), it's a wonder there's any still available after an hour. Obviously, most of you people are still sleeping; and you're only going to regret it once you eventually realize how much they've been killing it over the years. Cop it here or continue missing out into 2015.

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