Return of the Mick
Disclaimer: This stack was so damn big that it had to be split in two. It’s quite literally the length of two stacks. Like Moses parted the Red Sea, I parted the fat stack. Part One will be released today (clearly), and Part Two will be released very soon. Keep an eye on that inbox/promotions folder!
Allow me to take a moment to discuss an issue very near and dear to my heart, would you? Politics is an awfully heavy subject for such a young stack, but sometimes children need to hear the truth, even if it’s ugly. And the truth is, if you ever step outside and feel the need to listen to something on a speaker, don’t. Fink again. I don’t want to sound like the cops, but listening to anything on a speaker in public is disgusting and should be met with torrid furor. The truth hurts, but things like this must be addressed.
If you think your situation is an exception, I’d like you to take a long, hard glance within and ask yourself, “Why?” Are you in need of headphones? Send me a Venmo request. I’ll buy you a pair of the over-ear SkullCandy ones. Want everyone around you to become fans of Bassnectar? Leave it to me. I’ll tell them so you can save your voice for what’s really important. Are you hosting a large function at the park or someplace similar during which people are eating, drinking, and being merry? Make me a plate and carry on. Would the oldtimers be put off by such music due to its forward-thinking nature and advanced soundscapes? Go off.
When in doubt, stick to the universal moral imperative WWJD: What Would Jim Do? It’s hard to fuck up—if you think I would approve of the public use of a speaker, go for it. Remember, though: I rarely think this is an appropriate thing to do. You’d sooner catch me stealing all the tips from a Western-themed bar in San Francisco than listening to music on a speaker in public.
Keep your heads up, public speaker princes and princesses, your crowns are slipping. The peasants will eventually learn of your superior tastes, I’m sure of it.
That is all. Sit down, grab some drink or smoke-weed, and behold the latest stack in all of its prepubescent glory.
Why Must an Artist I Like Have the Worst Fanbase?
There’s a slight aroma of garlic protruding from my pores as I wrap up my all you can eat soup and salad at Olive Garden. I’ve just hung up the phone with Connor Oburst who smoked some DMT off of a gooses ass, and alerted me of a new LUM album that dropped. I’m stunned, floored, even- the potent garlic loaded sweat drips from my brow as I begin to process. Honestly probably the first time I’ve willingly listened to any sort of rag-time. Like a faded tie dye tee shirt, we whispered into t
Look at this shit, and I mean really look at it. No one with any sort of sense or wit about them would ever write anything like this. It’s so insipid and nonsensical and stupid that even Bandcamp’s commenting system felt like the comment had to be cut off! I know, I know—it’s a joke. Bright Eyes’ Connor Oburst (hilarious spelling, I must admit) would never smoke DMT off a goose’s ass! But a joke unveils one’s innermost truth, and the truth is, whoever said this is depraved. Their joke isn’t funny and it doesn’t make sense, but I get it. They desperately need the touch of a human, and sometimes the human touch one needs falsely manifests itself as a new Lil Ugly Mane release.
Sorry about that. I had to burn some sage to purify myself and release all this pent up negativity. Hopefully it works. Let’s restart.
You ever been inside a county fair’s funhouse? The ones that travel from fly-over state to fly-over state on eighteen wheels like a moving monolith? The ones with the house of glass mazes and the gargantuan slides and the never-ending treadmill tunnels adorned with hypnotic spirals and the mirrors that make you look either very tall, very squat, or very much like a frozen snake? The ones where your wildest dreams and worst nightmares could simultaneously come true if the stars align just right? Well, if you haven’t been to one, I must tell you that it’s very similar to listening to Lil Ugly Mane’s Volcanic Bird Enemy and the Voiced Concern. After reading this stack, you should either check out the nearest funhouse or listen to this album, whichever is achieved most painlessly. Actually, skip the bullshit and just listen to the album.
On Volcanic Bird Enemy and the Voiced Concern (crazy title), the musical maven Lil Ugly Mane, AKA Travis Miller AKA Shawn Kemp AKA Bedwetter AKA VUDMURK AKA that dude, unrestricted by the constraints of genre, does whatever the hell he wants to do, even if it doesn’t make sense. He jams DPH-soaked ragtime (“STYROFOAM”) between frigid indie (“COLD IN HERE”) and LA beat scene fodder (“BEACH HARNESS”), and somehow it manages to come together. It’s like he created nineteen non-sequiturs that are all linked only by melancholy, but either by hook or by crook, they create a beautifully downtrodden portrait of the artist as he struggles through mental health problems, personal relationships, and a potential MS diagnosis.
Lil Ugly Mane’s music is truly unlike anything else, which is both a curse and a blessing. The man has seamlessly made jumps from horrorcore to more insular alternative hip-hop to black metal to whatever this is. And the amazing thing is, he’s been great at each one, and now he has combined each of them (and much more) to spectacular results. He’s shown time and time again that his creativity and ability to execute hold no bounds, and Volcanic Bird Enemy is no different. That should be celebrated. He is an incredible artist, but he’s also incredibly inaccessible. His music can be difficult to make sense of at times, especially when his lyrical themes are so dreary. I mean, does a line like, “Feeling like I'm just a bridge for you to cross a stream / You watch me fall apart and never intervene / Benadryl submarine, Benadryl submarine,” make you feel good? No? Me neither, but it makes me feel something, which is more than a lot of music can do.
All of this combines to make an unholy brew that drives his fans absolutely mad. Lil Ugly Mane makes music that few can handle and even fewer can handle responsibly. Just look at the quote that began this segment. This is the mold that a vocal few Lil Ugly Mane fans are derived from. They’re unhinged just for the sake of being unhinged. It’s not really who they are; they’re just begging for a glance in their direction. It’s a weird kind of thirst that drives people away from great music. It makes no sense. There are ways to be funny with your album review that aren’t as...off-putting. (Maybe they should read my shit and see how a professional does it.) All it’s trying to do is be as erratic and foul as possible. It succeeds, but at what cost?
Anyway, enough hating on the fans. They’re weird as hell, but I don’t care. They frighten me, but they mean well. Volcanic Bird Enemy and the Voiced Concern is worthy of one thousand listens at least.
What do Drakeo the Ruler and the fellows of Wu Tang Clan have in common? Yes, they all rap. Thank you. But what else? They all use the term, “Blamp,” to various degrees. When Drakeo says it, he means that he’s going to a) ice out his chain or his wrist or his girl, b) have relations with someone else’s girl, or c) have relations with someone else’s girl and ice her out. When Wu Tang Clan dudes say it, they mean that they’re going to a) kill someone or b) kill something, like an instrumental.
To me, though—I’m much cleaner—a blamper is a hot track, and I’ve decided that the last stack’s “Heavy Hitters” was not aptly named for a stack aimed at young people. As a result, from here on out, the section of recent releases that I’m rocking with will be called “Blampers.”
Thank you for listening and have a good day.
Friends that Break Your Heart by James Blake
James Blake wears Allbirds—he deserves to have his friends break his little heart. Album is decent.
“Switch” by Sahbabii
Unabashed horniness, like, “That ass got some switch (Switch) / I wanna fuck her, let’s switch (Switch)” and NBA-player-hating, like, “He scared to shoot like Ben Simmons, we just checked his stats (Check his stats),” on the same song? Simply incredible.
“After Laughter” by RTB MB, Glockboyz TeeJaee, and The GodFather
I have no idea why Miles Bridges decided to be a rapper, but I’m not all that upset. He’s not great, but he doesn’t have to be! He’ll always be better on the court than in the studio, but on “After Laughter,” he proves that he can hold his own. He and his rapper homies get to have some fun, and he gets the chance them on to listeners on a national scale. Miles Bridges is already an important cog in the Charlotte Hornets machine, and if moonlighting as a rapper and calling himself RTB MB helps him let loose in his free time, that’s enough for me. The song is worth a total of one (1) spin, which is to say, it’s just fine.
“Flying Spirit” by Alchemist and Bruiser Brigade, and “Wildstyle” by Alchemist and ZelooperZ
Whaaaaaaaaaaaat the hell. We all knew that Danny Brown’s Bruiser Brigade roster was good, but did anyone realize they were this good?
Let’s break it down, verse by verse.
Danny Brown: As the group’s leader, it’d be disrespectful if he didn’t nab the opening verse, and I’ll be damned if he didn’t set the tone. Over ten years in the game and this man is still rapping like he’s got something to prove. Good.
Standout bar: “They say ‘Danny, how you get it?’/ Told 'em "’f you gotta ask me, motherfucker, you ain't with it’”
J.U.S.: Rapper, producer, engineer—the guy does it all for the Bruisers, so you already know he’s going to do his thing, regardless. Good!
Standout bars: “You flyin’ Spirit / It only take a knife to turn you to a flyin' spirit / Like Casper the Ghost / Me and Brown on Collards dumpin' blunts in the Ghost / I got the Tommy, he'll turn you right into ghost”
Fat Ray: This guy has been rapping for a looooooooooong time. He is an imposing presence on the mic, never wasting a fucking word. He is good. GOOD.
Standout bar: “Momma in my ear with that Q-Tip, now I got rhymes to go”
(Great double entendre!)
Bruiser Wolf: Newcomer of the year! Last year when landed his breakout tune “Dog Food,” he was known as Big Wolf, but now that he’s a Bruiser, he’s called Bruiser Wolf. Good name, even better rapper. He made my favorite rap album of the year, so you already know that this verse slays. Great!
ZelooperZ is the group’s wildcard, so it makes sense that he has his own track with plenty of room to spread his weirdo wings. It is glorious. Great.
Standout bar: “N***** can't hold my weight unless they on the moon.”
I was wondering if after all these years you’d like to meet
To go over the new section of No Oldtimers?
This is a new section with which I will discuss potentially puzzling, troubling, or confusing images and videos that I’ve seen. I might not discern something every week, but rest assured that this will be a recurring segment. If you see anything you need help discerning, feel free to bang my line and I’ll be happy to explain in the next stack.
Well, well, well, what do we have here? The energy-bomb, heat-seeking missile frontman from Japan’s Super Structure is going absolutely stupid during a performance. This is not surprising. What is surprising, though, is that he is wearing both a balaclava and a knit watch cap. Sounds like a hot combination, in terms of both sex appeal and heat retention, to me. But what do I know? Sweat is temporary, steez and anonymity are forever.