Saturday, 21 July 2012

Extend The Knowledge

Marc Mac- Extend The Knowledge/It's Right To Be Civil (Omniverse)

If you're interested in black politics, particularly the story of Martin Luther King, Malcolm X, Rosa Parks and the race protests of the 60's and also like hip hop then this double album from Marc Mac could be the perfect album for you. Not only does the 4Hero producers 53 track opus make for a good piece of soundtrack but it's also an incredible education in soundbites as history and music meet.

Digging up both popular and lesser publicised vocal recordings and interviews, this "..was inspired by Martin Luther King, Jr., Coretta Scott King, Rosa Parks, Detroit Red and the 1000's that made a difference". Clearly a subject close to his heart, the looped production and beats are Dilla-esque and the voxes are neatly placed alongside the music. Where Mac wants us to listen to the historical aspect, there is no music, just speech and that's as raw and powerful as any of the musical notes on offer.

All things considered, this is an excellent and meritable piece of work from the 4Hero man, and a great addition to any record collection.

"Every man must decide whether he will walk in the light of creative altruism or in the darkness of destructive selfishness." - Martin Luther King, Jr. 

If You like this try: J Dilla- Donuts // The Avalanches- Since I Left You

Saturday, 7 July 2012

Pacific Ocean Blue

Whilst at Rise Records last weekend I picked up this album from late Beach Boy drummer Dennis Wilson. It was only a fiver so thought i'd finally take up the offer. He was the first Beach Boy to release a solo album which surprised many, but it's definitely stood the test of time.

Copious smoking and alcohol abuse sent Wilsons voice gravelly and barotone and resulted in his untimely demise (he died whilst intoxicated and deep diving to rescue items he'd thrown off a yacht at a marina 3 years earlier). But without his voice sounding as well worn this LP would sound vastly different. The album provides a juxtaposition to the trademark Beach Boys melodies.

The cover art is striking too, with Wilson staring into the lens looking pretty disheveled. The title reminds me of the beach, and whilst it's pouring down with rain here in the UK, this album takes me to a place with a sunnier outlook.

Here's one of my favourite tracks from the 1977 album: