album of the month 05/2004

various artists: art of rebellion mixed by florian keller - various artists: rhythm science mixed by dj spookyvarious artists: art of rebellion mixed by florian keller
various artists: rhythm science mixed by dj spooky

two books with audio cd’s. two very different stories. two times multimedia – sort of classic – sort of not.

various artists: art of rebellion mixed by florian keller – stylefile/compost records

the cd was included with the brilliant book the art of rebellion by C100, a book dedicated to streetart, graffiti, stickers… but first, when listening to florian keller’s [compost rec.] mix-cd, you’re in for a surprise.
wait… it is not a hiphop mix!?
a book like this published a few years ago, you could bet money that the music would be hiphop.
but this is not hiphop. in fact its a rather housey affair. totally different ballgame.
is this a indicator that streetart/graffiti has moved out of and away from the hiphop subculture?
we’ll leave such speculations to the cultural interpretations of others.
i dont mind actually. because once this mix gets going it feels perfectly appropriate. the music has a very urban feel; it is housey, but contains the typical german jazzy elements with some electroid sub-bass sounds added for great effect. and later in the mix things get more ecclectic yet, with some breakbeaty, one ragga and a drum’n’bass track[s].
in this case the book is not enhanced by the mix-cd. it is a nice give-away, but it does not add anything to the book. the book itself is fantastic – extremly innovative layout, stuffed with great, inspiring images and descriptions of some of the most outstanding streetartists and some websites.

various artists: rhythm science mixed by dj spooky – the mit press

in his first book dj spooky that subliminal kid delivers a manifesto for rhythm science – “the creation of art from the flow of patterns in culture”. i know… sounds fucking pretentious… want more? “once you get into the flow of things, you’re always haunted by the way that things could have turned out. this outcome, that conclusion. you get my drift. the uncertainty is what holds the story together, and that’s what I’m going to talk about.”
and as dj spooky speaks about much of nothing you cant help but yet again wonder, if it is pretentiousness that makes something art, or does it not?
but hey, despite the aweful layout [i will never ever read this book, too busy those pages] and a cover you dont ever want to touch, because it feels like a dead pig’s skin, its a great little book.
in this case its actually the cd that stands out. dj spooky’s mix adds to the book, in fact it illustrates the book’s thesis.
musically its a moody and dark concoction, playing on the fringes between late 90’s electronica [seefeel, mouse on mars etc.] and late 20’s century classical improv. music [david shea, luciano berio and morton feldman] – with samples from poets james joyce, william s. burroughs, gertrude stein and ee cummings, cut and manipulated and added to the mix. as usual with dj spooky this is not easy listening, but well worth it. the mix reminds me of the recent adbusters anti-war mix, its just as rich and multi-layered, telling a haunting story that won’t leave you indifferent.

previous albums of the month:
album of the month 04/04
album of the month 03/04
album of the month 02/04
album of the month 01/04
album of the month 12/03
album of the month 11/03
album of the month 10/03

About Jan Zuppinger

Jan Zuppinger has been writing this blog since 2002. He likes to grow vegetables. He likes to eat them too. He has opinions on everything, but sadly no one cares. Jan Zuppinger is not joking, just joking, he is joking, just joking, he's not joking. *click.