Thursday, November 04, 2010
Legend Recognize Legend: Lazerbeak & Kanye West
Lazerbeak- "Let It Go" (video)
Kanye West- "Runaway" (video)
One of the two albums I played last night stirred my soul. The other one was a bitter disappointment.
The pointillistic pop of Legend Recognize Legend, the new album by Lazerbeak, came as a shock. The member of Doomtree is best known as one of the elite producers of the hip hop underground. Forget all that. Legend Recognize Legend is more akin to the epic psychedelia of Super Furry Animals. Fans of popular indie rock acts ranging from Arcade Fire to Phoenix will find a lot to like in Lazerbeak's latest.
Kanye West's My Beautiful Dark Twisted Fantasy isn't out yet, but it's not difficult to find. (Don't worry- I'll buy a physical copy when it's officially released on November 22.) West is, of course, brilliant. No popular artist of the past decade made more interesting or enjoyable music. I named Graduation my top album of 2007. And MBDTF's "Power" is one of the best songs of 2010. Taken as a whole, however, it seems as if West has finally succumbed to his own hubris.
The stark sonic contrast between the two projects is striking. West has access to the world's best talent and the resources to clear any sample. Yet MBDTF sounds inferior to Legend Recognize Legend. Hey, Mr. West- you should reach out to this guy.
It's no surprise that the lyrical content of the two projects is also dramatically different. I experience Lazerbeak's album as a rumination on God. (But that's just me.) Kanye's album is about- what else?- himself. (But that's just him.) Both albums are packaged with a DVD. Lazerbeak offers a low-budget but (mostly) creative video for every track. West, God bless him, directed a portentous 34-minute film. Compare and contrast above.
It's possible that I'll tire of Legend Recognize Legend and warm up to MBDTF with additional listening. I hope so. The world would be a lesser place with a watered-down West. Even Lazerbeak, I suspect, would agree.
I will always love "Whitney Houston". That's the title track of Hidden Pictures' new EP.
A few of my peers are less than pleased that U2 is skipping over Kansas City on its stadium tour next summer. I'm far more upset that The Fleshtones' current tour doesn't stop in KC.
Kansas City Click: Reggie B appears Thursday at the Gusto Lounge.
I'm not ashamed to admit that I love Colt Ford. He does his thing Friday at the Beaumont Club.
Apocalypse Meow-related events are taking place all weekend but Saturday's multi-artist bill at the Riot Room looks the most appealing to music lovers like me. Tim Finn explains.
The Record Bar hosts the CD release party for The People's Liberation Big Band on Sunday.
(Original image by There Stands the Glass.)