you just sound obnoxious when you try to knock how I drop this

bicycle

THIS WEEK: the ill-literate hiphop of the Beat Conflicts.

SONGS: “Broken Spoke” and “Forty Bees Remain”

MERRY BELATED XMAS.  Here’s The Beat Conflicts with some bicycle-related hiphop for you:
http://franzkeller.com/heaps/heapsongs/BCs_BrokenSpoke.mp3″

I had thought about kicking the blog off in December with this track, but then my computer’s brain died.  It’s a track that we made for a compilation by the fledgling ‘experimental techno’ label Pelotin who distributed a sample set of bicycle sounds (brake squeals, spinning spokes, bike bells, etc.) and asked people to make tracks.  As with most of our songs, I do the production and sing the chorus but leave the rapping to BC top rhymer “Praxis” aka “Theory” (explanation to follow) who serves up a baffling array of intricately ridiculous and erudite things to say about bicycles and how they relate to his own greatness as a rapper.

Despite the fact that we didn’t mesh with the rest of the tracks they wanted to use (too uptempo, too vocal), the Pelotin guys were charmed and gave us a spot on the bonus CD that comes with the vinyl, provided we could cut the song down under 3 minutes, which we did, and so the Beat Conflicts are for sale somewhere. We’re not moving into Beverly Hills or anything, but I still count it as a win, even though it does sting a little to lose out to a track entitled “Penis Slapping Against The Leg of a Naked Cyclist Drafting” (did I mention that they let you use outside samples?). Anyway, since most people I know don’t have working turntables or a desire to drive around Seattle looking for an obscure vinyl comp, I figured we’d let you guys listen to our full-length genius for free.

Last week’s bonus points: (1) “No Children” by the Mountain Goats. It might have been easier to identify if I was simultaneously playing guitar and piano.  (2) Jubilee, directed by Derek Jarman, a vision of post-apocalyptic England a la punk, a sort of female-driven Clockwork Orange.

BONUS: Here’s another BCs track (about bees) for you to listen to while I talk a bit more about the project:
http://www.franzkeller.com/beatconflicts/09%20BeatConflicts_FortyBeesRemain.mp3″ (download)

Back when I was living in Berkeley, I made a few off-beat hiphop tracks with my roommate, but I assumed that my hiphop production days were behind me when we each went off to a different grad school.  A couple years later, in Orange County, another tall, bearded friend-and-colleague of mine suggested a rap concept album whose songs would explore the divide between theory and its real-world execution.  Originally we talked about dividing the two positions between us, but given his superior mic skills and his fascination with Eminem’s manipulation of parallel personae, “his highness with color blindness” ended up assuming both characters as a productive conceit for his writing; on some tracks, he makes the distinctions between the characters clear through his flow, and on others, its up to you to notice it.

I had the idea of trying to get more rap-cademics together for a compilation called “Ill Literates”, but without other part-time MCs stepping forward, Prax and I just pulled together an EP of what we’ve done so far before he temporarily relocated to another continent.  More soon.

Bonus points for this week: (1) What band / song did I sample for “Forty Bees Remain”? (2) What other band / song does title “Forty Bees Remain” reference? (3) you probably recognize the guy with the hat up there, but Which movie do you think that shot’s from?

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3 Responses to “you just sound obnoxious when you try to knock how I drop this”

  1. 1) I knew right a way it was Of Montreal, so, knowing you, I should have jumped right to My British Tour Diary, but it took a couple guesses to figure out.

    2) Franz Ferdinand – 40′

  2. i guess i’m disqualified from answering the bonus questions… though i’ll admit i don’t know the answer to #2.

  3. […] contest for remixes of the various background musics and sound FX from the game, and fresh off the success of our song about bicycles, we decided to give it a shot.  Suffice it to say, we didn’t win–I’m starting to […]

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