Courtesy of Chelsie Green ’14, whose name and class year rhyme in a very satisfying manner:
He released his debut mixtape, The Wayfarer, last month and has received good press from media such as Spin and The Fader. Download it for some laid-back rap. Hopefully we’ll see some D’Angelo-ing up in here, and at the very least, dancing.
This Tokyo-raised ginger will most likely be getting all emotional, deeply feeling every sound he shares with us. Italian Vogue actually used his song “Tokyo Nostalgic” in a video, which is pretty incredible.
You can count on some trap-ish instrumentals that cause your mind to wander off somewhere. She’s not afraid to move her body for you as she gifts you with her music, so please give her the same respect. Thank you.
Date: Saturday, September 28 Time: 11:00 PM – 2:00 AM Place: Eclectic Cost: Free
This year’s lineup still follows the loosely defined Spring Fling template of “rap act, indie-ish buzz band, raucous opening act” of the pastfewyears, allowing us to reuse this sentence again and again, ya bishhh. Just kidding; Ryan Hemsworth seems to fit none of those categories, while Anamanaguchi probably takes buzz band and raucous opener simultaneously. “Electronic and electronically-backed music setting the stage for music press-electrifying rappers” is probably a better generalization this time around.
The lineup looks stacked this year! I’m excited to see the universal acclaim in the comments; a complete absence of complaints about the lineup has always been one of Spring Fling’s reliable standbys, year after year. (Ha ha ha.) Think your project’s missing? Put it in the submission form. Some quick overviews and music from the artists are after the jump.
Ever since last year, music review/hipster rant/legitimate journalism website Pitchfork has been all over Le1f aka Khalif Diouf ’11. They gave a solid review to his 2012 mixtape Dark York, saying “there’s a lot of fun to be had listening to Diouf take on rap taboos with a glint of mischief.” Because, of course, no conversation can be had without somewherementioning Le1f’s sexualpreferences. And, yes, those sort of themes and jokes pop up throughout his videos and mixtapes, but underneath all of the discussion about “queer rap” are some high-quality club-ready tracks— and more and more, that’s becoming the focus of all this hype.
Le1f, receiving much loveand coveragefrom this blog, just dropped another mixtape, and not surprisingly, the Internet is all over it. Fly Zoneis 13 tracks produced by 13 different producers, but Le1f is always the star of the show. “Spa Day” feels like Le1f is having the most fun, and he dodges in and out of quick, sharp-tongued rapping, even slipping in a “mazel tov.” On “Coins,” he laughs, messes with rhythms, and drops references to the Nintendo Entertainment System and the Sex Pistols. But throughout Fly Zone, Le1f and his lyrics are in charge: “My jokes are funny, but my money’s not.”
After the jump, read a few critics’ words on the mixtape, and then listen to the whole thing yourself—Fly Zone is streaming on Soundcloud and free to download.
No amps, no amps – just some double bass, box drum, cello, guitar, and audience rhythm (spoons, snaps, whatever we can think of) supplying the beat for some socially conscious bars and HOOKS. Come sing along!
The concert is part of a movement called the 1-0 movement which is a movement deemphasizing individualism and reemphasizing community – moving from 1s (individuals) to a 0 (circle / community), and inverting the semiotic concepts of 1 and 0 to do that. Ie; 0 = full, whole, and 1 = nothingness, finitude, etc. Themes of the bars will include: debt, pathos, gender, sustainability, consumerism, computers, love, and more.
In going with the ideological theme of the concert, the performance seeks to break down the hierarchical rapper / audience divide. There will be opportunities for audience input and an open mic section for whoever would like to get up and spit some bars. There will be a writing desk just outside the venue for people to write down some
lyrics if they so choose.
“We did our thing, we had a good time, and I think it was time for it to end.”
Still mourning the blow of Das Racist’s weekend demise? It wasn’t supposed to come like this. Though Heems (Himanshu Suri ’07) broke the news rather suddenly at a show in Munich, bandmate Kool A.D. (Victor Vazquez ’06) later tweeted that he had actually left the band in September and was asked by his manager to keep quiet. This week Vazquez spoke about the details of his decision with Rolling Stone, explaining that he planned to quit the group officially after wrapping up their current tour—but before completing a second album:
“I was like, ‘I’ll do the rest of the tour—anything that’s on the schedule right now, I’ll do. And then I’m done. I’m not recording the album,'” he said in a phone call, referring to the single-record deal inked with Sony in July. “When I made that decision two months ago, I was certain in that decision. And I think maybe the whole team around us thought I was going to change my mind.”
Despite the tension surrounding their breakup, Vazquez adds that he and Heems—whom he met in 200 Church in 2003—are “more or less still friends.” As both artists pursuesolo careers, they just “don’t want to be in a professional capacity” anymore. Or have to hang out all the time, sadly enough:
Also, click past the jump for my five favorite Le1f-related gifs.
Lest you worry that we haven’t posted enough recently about rising hip hop sensation Le1f/Khalif Diouf ’11 (note: wehave), here’s something to tide you over. The giftastic rapper behind “Wut” and “Soda” recently popped up on Pitchfork.tv, chatting about some of his influences (Wesleyan Pride Alert: “Heems is someone that inspires me a lot in terms of performance, and Das Racist”) and the vision he has for his wildly theatrical live performances:
“If someone was coming to see me, I would tell them to expect a really visceral, cathartic performance that is rap music. It’s a rap show that—I don’t want to say spiritual, but I’m trying to be very intense and honest and guttural. When I’m onstage and I realize people aren’t moving, it does force me to go really crazy. I have to find some rage.”
Filmed during CMJ, the interview also finds Le1f talking about his lyrics. “A lot of people say you can’t understand the words, and often I kind of don’t care,” he admits. “But one of the drawbacks of that is maybe people don’t understand the message. So it’s nice to have my dancers basically blessing the audience with holy water.” That theme also seems prevalent in the “Soda” video. Because it’s about, like, liquid and stuff.
“I’ve become in touch with my astrological signs. I’m a Cancer, and I’m a Pisces Rising for my moon [sign], so I’m pretty fucking watery.”
If you haven’t heard of the talented Wes AlumHimanshu Kumar Suri ’07, AKA Heems, you might still know that this powerful Wes grad has been posted about a lot here at Wesleying. Like, a lot a lot. No, really, we’ve posted on him a lot. Personally, I’m just jealous that he has that many cool pictures of himself that we can continue to write articles about him without repeating them .I wish I was famous…
The point is: fresh off his Reddit AMA, Heems has just dropped a new mixtape entitled Wild Water Kingdom, in which he raps not too much about hydrogen dioxide or monarchical governing systems but more about an eclectic mix of subjects that seems to be on his mind. (Check out the track “Soup Boys (Pretty Drones).”) Heems was supposed to release it a while ago, but his plans were delayed by Hurricane Sandy [insert witty water kingdom/hurricane joke here]. Keep reading for more, including the download link, after the jump.
“We wanted to bring [?uestlove] in because we felt he should really be a professor.”
Remember that time Wesleyan snagged celebrated alum Dar Williams ’89 to return to campus to teach a course on Music Movements in a Capitalist Democracy and then Williams went and got Peter Yarrow, co-writer of “Puff the Magic Dragon,” to show up on campus and lead a raucous protest singalong in Zelnick while holding hands with Adam Rotstein ’13?
NYU’s one-upped us. No, not another Lil B lecture. This time they got ?uestlove to co-teach a course at the Tisch School of the Arts this spring. Just call him Professor ?uesto: