This Pound of Flesh
Cannibal Vegan Atheist on a Bucket: Hip Hop from an Alternative Universe THIS POUND OF FLESH by Emcee Will E.P.: a double album, over 2 and a half hours, 38 tracks of rhymes and comedy skits over a blistering array of music, samples from African field recordings from the 1940s, 20th century atonal classical music, and just about every other genre and era. Like nothing you've ever heard, this work is theatrical, with characters such as The Elf, the collective insanity of nations and the Dark Monk, the inquisitor. There are tracks about living off the land ("It's Good" Track 13, Disc 2), a genuinely moving exploration of freedom in American history in light of the Bush years ("Freedom" Track 12, Disc 2), as well as a hysterical discussion by two friends about how to drive home after one has his driver's seat stolen over a beat made of a combination of traditional Russian choral music and a German kid's song ("Driving on a Bucket" Track 13, Disc 1). It's real hip hop, real unusual, and it really works as pop music. Something unlike anything else ever recorded but when you hear it, you'll get it. Will E.P. is an emcee who can go from a hip hop reference ("...in the Palladium, like Rakim and Mahogany...") to literature ("...heart of darkness in the Home Depot parking lot...") without pretension while rocking your socks off (get your flip flops: Track 12, Disc 1). And this thing gets wild with rhythm, from a track about a nun getting a sex change and becoming a monk in 4/5 time ("Voodoo" Track 14, Disc 1) to a track about seeing your friends naked on the internet based around intricate, classical Indian percussion ("Emergency" Track 5, Disc 1). Danceable, thoughtful, yet it hits harder than anything out there. Rougher than any gangster, Emcee Will E.P. doesn't just shoot emcees, he eats them ("Pox on You" Track 4, Disc 1). And it only gets worse from there: murder (Track 3, Disc 2), nuclear terrorism (Track 10, Disc 2), suicide bombing (Track 8, Disc 2), burning infidels at the stake (Track 7, Disc 2), fascism (Track 9, Disc 2). After this, nothing is menacing. There is no self-censorship anywhere. This is the first rap record that covers the full range of human emotions. Ignoring standard hip hop navel-gazing, Emcee Will E.P. goes right to the basic human universals. Something you have to hear to believe. Emcee Will E.P. recorded a number of rap albums and singles in the late 1980s and early 1990s, went on to other things and lives way off the beaten path in Upstate New York, living with the seasons and the land with his family. All art work, lyrics and music by Emcee Will E.P. Live show includes simultaneous rapping/mixing on laptop, video/live interaction, and unforgiving stand-up. See site (willep.com) for details.
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