If sound is essentially a movement, ultimately the fate of the movement lies within me – Tony CombsDid you know the Black Eyed Peas before Fergie?
Sellout is a term I try to avoid. Instead, I point to the moment bands start to suck. Fergie was B.E.P.’s fonzie moment. If you long for the B.E.P. before Fergie I wanna show you something even tighter, and better: Sol.illaquists of Sound.
I have a friend who writes for Reax Magazine and when they named Solilla best hip-hop act in Florida I gave her a rash of shit. It was obvious. They are signed to a big label and, well, let’s be honest, Florida hasn’t been known for hip-hop since Luke Skywalker. My major contention with their award was I thought it unfair. At the time I had heard about 4 Solilla songs. Now, after owning the cd and seeing them live, I wouldn’t give Reax or anyone shit for naming them best band in Florida….and it is unfair, cause they’re just that freaking good. It’s like watching the little league tapes of an NFL star in retrospect…there just isn’t any competition. The real muthafucker of it is that as good as they are…you ain’t gonna hear ’em. Why? I’ll quote myself from my Cunninlynguists article:
muthafuckers ain’t hearin’ ’em. Whole god damned world talks about bullshit like Fitty, and Lloyd Banks, and fucking Mike Jones, and whatever other fucking pop-rapper is spelling a tennis shoe brand on Clear Channel instead of looking past the spoon in their face.
That’s why. They’re too good for mainstream success. BEP hired Fergie and chased the paper. On one hand I can not blame them on the other….FEH. Back to S.O.S.
First and foremost. S.O.S. does not sound or look like a typical hip-hop band. There ain’t no turntables on stage and the girls in the band ain’t showing you half their titties and all their ass. DiViNCi is the man behind the music. He plays MPCs. You have to see that shit live to even get it, so I ain’t even gonna put it in words. I will say this: He plays those machines like politicians lie. With such a grace and efficiency that you can’t believe what you see. It’s real though. And all those MPC’s (drum machines for the confused) make S.O.S.’s sound sometimes techno, occasionally industrial, sometimes hip-hop, but always fresh. Then….shit. Then you got Swamburger and Alexandrah manning the mics. Swam raps and Alexandra sings their way through “a message of self-love, respect, and knowledge within the confines of a culture which seems designed to mute personal expression and freedom.” These people are probably better than anything on your iPod. Don’t believe me? Listen to the samples below. More importantly. Go see these guys live. If you can see this band live and not be a fan, then you’re not a fan of…fuck…not just hip-hop…you’re not a fan of music. Here is a real world example of how good these guys are live: My friends rescheduled their Key West trip to be in town for their June 9 show here in Tampa.
And after all of that love you knew I was putting this album on the Essential Listening list! I’ll also say this. As If We Existed is the best hiphop cd I have heard since I heard Cunninlynguists – A Piece of Strange came out in Jan. of 2006.