Then as the music from DJ Trackstar begins, EL-P says “I insist that you clap your hands like this, lets see if NPR has rhythm”–and after a few claps everyone is way off, to much laughter.
The blurb says
Like any good pair of twins, Run the Jewels have a freaky sort of unspoken fraternity. When El-P (née El-Producto, née Jaime Meline) — rapper, producer, and all-around godfather of the backpacker scene of the late-90’s — and Killer Mike strode in with their usual uniforms — Mike in a gold chain as thick as a garter snake, El in a fitted Yankees cap and pair of blue-mirrored sunglasses — the two didn’t have to do as much as nod to one another before upending three tracks from their latest LP, RTJ3, in strange and perfect symbiosis.
On “Talk to Me,” I feel like Killer Mike’s flow is a little better than El-Ps at least in the beginning. El-P also says fuck a lot, which I noticed when I first downloaded their album, as well–lots of fucks, which is kind of lazy, I think. Or maybe I just like Mike’s lyrics better. Like this:
Born Black, that’s dead on arrival
My job is to fight for survival
In spite of these #AllLivesMatter-ass white folk
After he says this line, they stand back to back, middle fingers raised. El-P says “this is the pose we do in this song.”
Before “Legend Has It” El-P grabs a banana like a microphone and says it feels more natural that way (Mike then signed the banana for Bob and he had it laminated). As the song begins, Mike says, “y’all can dance to it your boss ain’t looking. It’s a little slower and El-P has his flow on and has some great lines:
I am the living swipe right on the mic, I’m a slut
I don’t know how to not spit like a lout
I’ll spill a pound of my kids on your couch
I don’t play chicken, you prick, I’m a fox
You wanna kick it, I’ll give you the rocks
You kiss the wood chipper blade if you balk
I’m fuckin’ magic, in fact I’m a warlock of talk
I got a unicorn horn for a (stop)
But the crowd is on it this time when they chant and the crowd goes “RTJ!”
As the song ends, El-P says “You know why they do these things because for that least one week you cannot complain about your jobs.”
The final song is “A Report To The Shareholders.” Before it begins, El-P says. “It’s oddly awesome to be here.” Then he takes one more swig. Mike shouts, who got the weed?
It is much slower, almost spoken. Each guy gets a verse, between them, there s little instrumental and El-P says ” we haven’t figured out to so in this part.” My favorite line of the show comes in this song:
“ooh, Mike said ‘uterus'”
They acting like Mike said, “You a bitch”
To every writer who wrote it, misquoted it
Mike says, “You a bitch, you a bitch, you a bitch”
Add a “nigga” for the black writer that started that sewer shit
The two do indeed play off each other perfectly–echoing the last lines of each other’s words. And despite how angry they sound i the words, they are a surprisingly genial bunch.
[READ: December 8, 2016] Demon Vol. 1
I’ve really enjoyed pretty much everything that Jason Shiga has created. I love the style of his characters–seemingly very simple yet very expressive. And I love that his stories are bizarre, complex and mind-blowing.
I’m delighted that this series is being distributed by First Second since I like just about everything they do. Although I am a little surprised that the published it, given how icky it gets.
Shiga has drawn some books that were kid friendly, but this book IS NOT! It is about suicide and murder and bad language and all manner of adult things. Indeed in the forward Shiga notes, “It’s been a dream come true working on this project, pushing past the limits of common decency–of good taste–with every new page. (more…)