19 November 2013

19th November - DJ Shadow's Endtroducing...

Artist – Album: DJ Shadow – Endtroducing…
Released: 19th November 1995
Sounds Like: Patchwork

Well, I may have managed to stave it off for 323 days and blogs but – DUN, DUN, DUNNN! – the dreaded writer’s block has struck with a vengeance. I’ve been racking my brain all day and I can’t think of a bloody word to write DJ Shadow’s masterpiece. But then it hit me, why not take inspiration from the album itself, officially the first album in history to be made up entirely of samples. Result, it’s simultaneously the perfect tribute and a massive cheat!:

Trip-hop's crowning achievement, it's innovative, but it builds on a solid historical foundation, giving it a rich, multi-faceted sound. It's not only a major breakthrough for hip-hop and electronica, but for pop music. Shadow's brief is to develop a totally sample-based idiom, weaving a cinematically broad spectrum so deftly layered that the sampling-is-stealing argument falls flat.

Endtroducing… practically folds you into its symphonic fantasia, the coming-of-age story of a 24-year-old bunk-bed dreamer. A surreal film soundtrack on which jazz, classical, and jungle fragments are artfully blended with turntable tricks and dialogue snippets. It’s  not only one of the most daring and original albums of recent times, but also one of the loveliest – music and chaos and satire and self-mockery and music all at once.

The album flips hip hop inside out all over again like a reversible glove, and again, and again, and each time it's sudden and new. I am, I confess, totally confounded by it. I hear a lot of good records, but very few impossible ones... You need this record. You are incomplete without it.

Albumaday... rating: 9/10

1.       Best Foot Forward – 0:49
2.       Building Steam with a Grain of Salt – 6:40
3.       The Number Song – 4:40
4.       Changeling – 7:17
5.       Transmission 1 – 0:35
6.       What Does Your Soul Look Like (Part 4) – 5:08
7.       Untitled – 0:24
8.       Stem/Long Stem – 7:48
9.       Transmission 2 – 1:29
10.   Mutual Slump – 4:02
11.   Organ Donor – 1:57
12.   Why Hip Hop Sucks in ’96 – 0:43
13.   Midnight in a Perfect World – 4:57
14.   Napalm Brain/Scatter Brain – 9:23
15.   What Does Your Soul Look Like (Part 1 – Blue Sky Revisit) – 6:17
16.   Transmission 3 – 1:11

Listen to ‘Midnight in a Perfect World: http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=InFbBlpDTfQ

Also released on the 19th November:
1991: U2 – Achtung Baby

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